An unfinished task: Viewing the legitimization of contemporary Chinese art from the Third Shanghai Biennale | Intellect Skip to content
1981
Volume 7, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 2051-7041
  • E-ISSN: 2051-705X

Abstract

The Shanghai Biennale, initiated in 1996, was launched by the Shanghai Art Museum under the background of the proliferation and expansion of the biennial/triennial exhibition system outside Europe and the United States in the last decade of the twentieth century. Based on the investigations of the themes and tasks of the First and Second Shanghai Biennales, this article focuses on the Third Shanghai Biennale opened in 2000, which has made remarkable breakthroughs in its curatorial strategy. By including international curators and artists in the exhibition, the Shanghai municipal government and the Shanghai Art Museum were committed to establishing an international profile of the Shanghai Biennale and further making it an integral part of its namesake city’s cultural branding in the era of globalization. Soon after the opening of the Shanghai Biennale, it was prevalently regarded as a significant landmark of legitimization in many discourses, which was hard fought for by Chinese practitioners after 1989. By analysing the background, curatorial concepts and impacts of the Third Shanghai Biennale and , this research deciphers the connotation of legitimization advocated by contemporary Chinese art circle, as well as the complex relationship with both conflict and cooperation between the official and unofficial arts. Did the task of legitimizing contemporary Chinese art fully accomplished? In this process, what sort of effects did China’s governmental manipulation have on the legitimization of contemporary Chinese art at home and its value output on the international arena? The above lines of inquiry offer a new perspective on contemporary Chinese art, especially with regard to further media experimentations, curatorial practice and value assessment in art practice after 2000.

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2020-08-01
2024-04-21
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