Contemporary Art in Breakthroughs
Source:artintern.net Author:Li Xingqiang Date: 2012-12-08 Size:
Recently I was invited to write a piece for Transcend Boundaries—China Contemporary Art Invitation Exhibition. It’s known that art criticism is rarely read because the critical articles are full of praises. What’s more, critics are uncreative for their articles are filled with nothing but terms and quotes. I, however, compared this exhibition to other prosperous young artist shows and find something unexpected. The artists in this exhibition are mostly famous in their own fields and they are trying to make a breakthrough in the language of oil painting. These paintings are not only socially ironic but also tasteful in painting language. To some extent, the collective expression is a tribute to great masters in form language.

  Recently I was invited to write a piece for Transcend Boundaries—China Contemporary Art Invitation Exhibition. It’s known that art criticism is rarely read because the critical articles are full of praises. What’s more, critics are uncreative for their articles are filled with nothing but terms and quotes. I, however, compared this exhibition to other prosperous young artist shows and find something unexpected. The artists in this exhibition are mostly famous in their own fields and they are trying to make a breakthrough in the language of oil painting. These paintings are not only socially ironic but also tasteful in painting language. To some extent, the collective expression is a tribute to great masters in form language.

  The theme is Transcend Boundaries, which, according to my understanding, is the breaking of fixed ideas and logic to explore new knowledge boundary. Artists are largely confined in creation by their knowledge, which are accumulated through years and sealed. We believe that is the boundary in art creation, a hardened shell to conquer. Besides, the boundary is territorial. Artists in this exhibition come from Hangzhou, Shanghai, Shantou, Chengdu and Chongqing. The exhibition is aimed to transcend the boundaries and find a breakthrough for art under the influence of capital.

  It is known that critical standards have always been changing during the development process of China contemporary art. In 1980s and 90s, innovation and breakthrough are valued as well as international big exhibitions. After 2000, price is the only bar. No matter the time or taste, painting will always be related to its unique language and expression. Style and paint are for expressing; form and content are the focus of balance.

  Contemporary art has not been a part of official mainstream form, as a form of sub-culture. Some older established artists lose their creative passion and inspirations while they surrender to the mainstream circle. Young artists explore their own way based on the strategies of last generation. Every artist is under the torture of art creation itself—to express freely and liberate human nature. Epiphany will help artists to upgrade and liberate; therefore, creation is a way to know the artists themselves and adjust the values.

  In this information-oriented society, contemporary has been versatile, with symbols, images and abstractness as art languages, to take over the dominance in this area. During this process, pseudo-academic study has been overestimated. Some eccentric works are even beyond the artists themselves. The over-interpretation from critics diminishes the strength of works with too much wording. A market-oriented painting trend is formed for the tastes change quickly. After fashion changes, creative art will decline and there will be no descendants.

  Contemporary art has been developing while breaking the rules established earlier. When it is commercialized, creation becomes slower and slower. Many artists have to abandon the established commercial symbols, especially those professionals to make a living by selling the pieces. Young artists begin to copy themselves, get public attention by publicity and exposure and sell for money. Art language is seldom considered, with emphasis on pseudo-academic and not the painting language. What’s important in the painting is the not the challenge in technique, but also in aesthetics. The art language is extracted and refined, to resonate with the viewers. When more equipment, video, multi-media and synthetic materials are included in art, oil painting should re-discover the fun of oil language. Or should the so called academic interpretation be more important? It’s worth considering in this field.

  There are a dozen of excellent young artists in this exhibition, exploring breakthroughs with their own artistic creations. They are trying to create in the stereotyped contemporary art and also try to discover new art methods by exchanges in this exhibition. Mr. Gan Yifei plans to right the contemporary art, identify the current landmarks and explore new possibilities. This exhibition signifies the awareness of group collectiveness—expression of society, life and art in a free and positive way.

[Editor] 常霞

    Artintern