Contemporary Chinese Art: A Critical History

Contemporary Chinese Art: A Critical History
Library Shelf Location 15.CNGL
Publication Date 2014


  • With a fast-growing international market and a thriving artistic community, contemporary Chinese art is riding a wave of prosperity, though issues of censorship still abound. Shedding light on the current art scene, this book puts China's recent artistic output into the context of the wider cultural, economic, and political conditions that surround it.
  • The market for contemporary Chinese art is one of the fastest-growing internationally, attracting buyers from all over the world, including, increasingly, from within China itself. There are thriving artistic communities in major cities throughout China, most notably Beijing's world famous 798 Art Zone. Meanwhile, the arrest and secret detention in 2011 of artist Ai Weiwei focused attention on China's politics and issues of state control. This book sheds light on the development of Chinese art since Deng Xiaoping's policy of 'Opening and Reform' was confirmed in 1978, putting the art into context within China and internationally. Paul Gladston provides a critical mapping of ideas and practices that have shaped contemporary Chinese art, showing how they bind the art - as a consequence of artistic complicity and/or resistance - to structures of power and state not just within but also outside China. While the principal focus is on art produced by artists from mainland China, the book also discusses contemporary art made by artists from Taiwan and Hong Kong-Macau, as well others belonging to diasporic Chinese communities. Unravelling the complexities of politics, artistic practice and Chinese culture, Contemporary Chinese Art is an essential companion for readers interested in contemporary art or Chinese culture, history or politics.
  • Review: ""Contemporary Chinese Art "is an emerging field for academic research and writing. Although much has already been written on the subject particularly in non-academic contexts, there is a need for more searching scholarly analysis and the construction of related critical discourses. Gladston's book provides a vividly critical account of contemporary Chinese art's development over the last four decades while situating it carefully in relation to its wider socio-political contexts. Gladston discusses key events in the overall history of modern and contemporary Chinese art based on five years of research in China. He also signposts important possibilities for the further development of contemporary Chinese art. This is a vital book for future excursions in the field of contemporary Chinese art research."--Wang Chunchen, Central Academy of Fine Arts


  • Paul Gladston is Associate Professor of Culture, Film and Media and Director of the Centre for Contemporary East-Asian Cultural Studies at the University of Nottingham, UK. He is editor of the Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art.


ISBN 9781780232690
Quantity 1
Pages 256 pages ; 25 cm
Author Paul Gladston
Format Paperback
Publisher Reaktion Books Ltd, London
Category Art from a specific country
Related Country/Global Region China
Artist's Nationality Chinese
Language English

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