July 8, 2005 - Helsinki City Art Museum - A Strange Heaven, Contemporary Chinese photography
July 8, 2005

A Strange Heaven, Contemporary Chinese photography

A Strange Heaven, Contemporary Chinese photography
Until 28th August 2005

Art Museum Tennis Palace, Helsinki City Art Museum
Salomonkatu 15, 00100 Helsinki, Finland


Image: Weng Fen, Great Family Aspirations, Patriotism 2000-2002, © Galerie Rudolfinum.

Art Museum Tennis Palace presents A Strange Heaven, introducing some 42 contemporary Chinese artists from China, Taiwan and Hong Kong, of whom two currently reside abroad. The comprehensive exhibition, filling both floors of the museum, spans the last 15 years of Chinese photography and represents the most extensive exhibition of its kind ever shown Finland.

During the past ten years, contemporary Chinese art has increasingly established itself on the international art scene. Almost without exception the main focus has been on painting, video art, installation works, music and architecture, whilst photography remained peripheral. Since the beginning of the 1990s, however, Chinese photographers have also emerged and received recognition as photography has evolved into an independent art form.

The principal themes of the exhibition are founded on the diversity of contemporary Chinese reality. For the most part, the works deal with individual identity, family and present society in times of rapid transition and development. Many of the works are inspired by the aesthetics of ancient cultures and philosophical traditions, and others by recent political upheavals. Chinas economy has been expanding rapidly for some decades, which has led to unanticipated social change. This, too, is reflected in the works, which deal with problems that are relatively new to China: urbanisation and globalisation. Many of the artists also deal with the universal problems of sexuality, sensuality and gender.

Artists represented in the exhibition are: Ai Weiwei, Cang Xin, Chang Chien-Chi, Chen Chieh-jen, Chen Lingyang, Chen Shaoxiong, Chen Shun-chu, Ching Chin-wai, Feng Mengbo, Hai Bo, Han Lei, He An, Hong Hao, Hong Lei, Hu Jieming, Hung Tung-lu, Huang Yan, Jin Feng, Leung Chi-wo, Lin Shu-min, Lin Tianmiao, Liu Zheng, Ma Liuming, Qiu Zhijie, Rong Rong, Shao Yinong & Muchen, Shi Yong, Song Yongping, Wang Jinsong, Wang Ningde, Wang Qingsong, Weng Fen, Wu Shanzhuan & Inga Svala Thorsdottir, Wu Tien-chang, Yao Jui-chung, Yin Xiuzhen, Yuan Goang-ming, Zhao Bandi, Zhao Shaoruo, Zheng Guogu, Zhou Xiaohu, and Zhuang Hui.

The exhibition was compiled by Galerie Rudolfinum in Prague and its curators are Chang Tsong-zung and Galerie Rudolfinums director Petr Nedoma. The exhibition includes a richly illustrated 188-page catalogue, with articles by Petr Nedoma and Chang Tsong-zung.
Further information: Curator Tuija Kuutti, tel. 358 9 310 87021, 358 50 463 6916 / Educational Curator Arja Miller, tel. 358 9 310 87007, 358 50 336 1980 / press material: Press Secretary Karri Buchert tel. 358 9 310 87004, 358 50 304 6707.
Guided tours: Guided tours free of charge in Finnish on Wednesdays at 6pm, on Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm and in Swedish on the first and third Sunday of every month at 3pm. To book a private tour at another time, or in another language, please call tel. 358 9 310 87003.

Art Museum Tennis Palace
Salomonkatu 15, 00100 Helsinki, Finland Open: TuesSun 1120.30, Mon closed
Children under the age of 18 free of charge.

Further exhibitions in Helsinki City Art Museum include:
Til 2nd October 2005 Tales & Truths childrens book illustrations
Art Museum Meihlahti

9th September 27th November 2005 JAPAN POP: Manga and Contemporary Japanese Art
Art Museum Tennis Palace

15th October 2005 15th January 2006 Goethe abwärts. Deutsche Jungs, etc.
Art Museum Meihlahti
For additional information please go to: www.taidemuseo.fi

Helsinki City Art Museum
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