Wednesday, April 06, 2011

by Bo

50 Moganshan Lu in many ways is an artistic colony hidden in the great
urban landscape that is Shanghai. When visiting the galleries at M50,
one notices that each has its own unique style to which it exhibits.
No gallery is the same. Each has its own theme that forces the viewer
to think about the deeper aspects of artist's presentation.
One of the exhibits I visited was the Yun Lang Project
at Art Link. The artwork found here was part of a contemporary
documentary. The artists who were all students in art school went out
into the wild. There they created their works of art. When observing
the final project the viewer sees how the artist dealt with their time
in the wilderness. The layout of the exhibit represents the various
attitudes of each artist. Each artist was given their own place in the
greater exhibit. As a result, each artist essentially had their own
private exhibition. These mini expos one finds compete against the
other. The overall exhibition was a group project; one can't help but
praise one artist and criticize another. When walking around and
looking at the various installations at times the works didn't make
any sense. When there is no real order questions usually follow
through your mind. What were they thinking? One in particular was very
confusing and lacked true purpose. There was an installation that had
two twigs from a forest. The title of the installation was "ear plugs"
The presentation seems very lazy as if the artists just picked up some
sticks in the woods. The artist essentially didn't define what their
installation was all about. As a result, the viewer leaves confused.
The worst thing an artist can do is create a product
that is ambiguous. Though art should make you think deeply about
particular issues it should not leave the viewer wondering. Another
gallery I visited was the Vanguard Gallery which was holding an
exhibit by Sun Xun called the "Clown's Revolution" The exhibition was
centered on the animated film that even today I still have no clear
understanding. Visitors to the exhibition are drawn to a dark room in
the back. Here a short animated film is played that could be compared
to a nightmare. Still Sun Xun like any artist had a reason for
creating these crazy artistic features. By definition this exhibit is
an example of the free thinking nature that is contemporary art in
China. Its presentation shows that art in modern China is looking to
differentiate it's self from the Western mode.

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