Focus Aisa: Beyond Geography at Art Toronto 2012

Focus ASIA: Beyond Geography                                                         ART TORONTO Curated by Katherine Don and Shengtian Zheng                           October 26-29, 2012    BEYOND GEOGRAPHY Art has a way of charting new directions and ways of seeing the world. Beyond Geography is a display of art works and installations that respond to this year’s Focus Asia theme.  The constant references to East versus West in artistic explorations is often part of the paradigm for contemporary artists based in Asia creating work for an international audience.  Yet cultural heritage often plays no role in the artistic process and rather is a reflection of our dynamic global world today. In Beyond Geography—a title inspired by a video work by the artist Li Ran—we present thought-provoking installations and video works that illustrate the hybrid expressions of multiple cultures or fusion of universal themes. Our exhibition opens the question to the dialogue about what kind of art do we expect to be produced by a diverse group of artists who happen to have lived in Asia or are of Asian descent. When looking at specific materials used by these artists, are we more or less inclined to support or change our perceptions of “Asia”? Throughout our planning for Focus Asia special exhibition at Art Toronto 2012, it has become increasingly clear to us that an artist’s name or point of origin conjures up a preconceived idea of their artistic production. However, while their work may not actually reflect the true heritage of that individual, it reveals issues in our global world today. The Focus Asia highlight exhibition presents over 10 video installations, including ‘The Village and Elsewhere’ series by Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook, ‘Writing in the Rain’ by FX Harsono, ‘Growing Pains’ by Rutherford Chang, ‘One by One’ by Kan Xuan, ‘War of Java’ by Jompet Kuswidananto, ‘Ons Aller Belang’ by Tromarama, ‘Beyond Geography’ by Li Ran, as well as installations including the monumental work on paper ‘Untitled 2009-2011(Map of the Land of Feeling)’ by Rirkrit Tiravanija, wall sculptures from the ‘Flatland’ series by Tomas Vu, ‘Anonymity’ lightbox series by Poklong Anading and a site specific automated installation of an Indonesian drum orchestra produced by The Gamelatron. 聚焦亚洲作为我们突显当代艺术最有影响力话题而建立的年度创意项目的继续,除了邀请来自世界最大大陆上关注亚洲艺术的著名画廊和新兴画廊共同参与之外,此次特别项目也包含了由著名的典藏国际版主编郑胜天和独立策划人唐凯琳共同策划的“超越地域”的展览。策展人郑胜天和唐凯琳选择了令人发省的装置和视频作品来描绘多元文化的混合表达。虽然一些作品看起来没有那么明显的亚洲文化标记,其实此次展览目的是进行一次对话关于观众期待那些生活在亚洲或者是亚裔的艺术家创造什么样的艺术作品,好让我们来审视、重新思考和反映我们对亚洲本身的理解。 对于2012年此次装置展,多伦多艺术博览会诚挚的欢迎杨画廊和尤伦斯当代艺术中心,他们都是第一次在加拿大展出,此次他们将呈现中国艺术家的作品,比如UCCA将展出张晓刚和隋建国作品,杨画廊将展出王郁洋和蒋鹏奕作品。除此之外,“超越地域”特别策划展览中也包将展出阚萱、闫晓静和李然的作品 Details of the fair programme will be available on www.arttoronto.ca/focusasia/ Artist work list: 1.    Araya Rasdjarmrearnsook 2.    FX Harsono 3.    Jompet Kuswidananto 4.    Kan Xuan 5.    Li Ran 6.    Poklong Anading 7.    Rirkrit Tiravanija 8.    Rutherford Chang 9.    Taylor Kuffner 10.    Tomas Vu 11.    Tromarama 12.    Sarindar Dhaliwal 13.    Yan Xiaojing 14.    YISHU interviews Art Toronto Focus Asia events Panel Discussions: •    3pm Friday, October 26 -  No More Westerns: How are artists creating art for   consumption? Shengtian Zheng, Independent curator / scholar, currently Managing Editor of Yishu Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art Katherine Don, Independent curator based in Beijing Birgit Zimmerman, Director of Galerie Zimmermann Kratochwill in Austria and the Philippines The access to Western culture and new media in Asia is undoubtedly a great influencer of change for contemporary art being produced in Asia today. Set against the backdrop of different cultural contexts, as well as within evolving art industries, how are artists adapting to these shifts in global perspective? Is the production of contemporary art a reflection of society in Asia today? •    3pm Saturday, October 27 – Institutions for the Future: Are Asian institutions stifling artistic creativity? Keith Wallace, Editor-in-Chief, Yishu Journal of Chinese Contemporary Art Biljana Ciric, Independent curator based in Shanghai Haema Sivanesan, Executive Director of Centre A, Vancouver Access to art is found anywhere from artist initiated spaces and traditional galleries, to private museums and commercial sponsored art projects. Artistic practice in Asia is challenged by evolving standards or lack of precedence within institutions. In a sense, it has been taken out of the hands of artists who are now forced to adhere to the protocol and rules of what is a huge, largely consumerist art industry. Through exploring the different histories and existing art infrastructures vary between China, Vietnam, the Phillipines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and India, how are artists are strategizing to regain control of their destinies? Curator Tours: Katherine Don, co-curator of Art Toronto’s special feature Focus ASIA, will lead a tour of its participating established and emerging galleries and the related curated exhibition Beyond Geography. From photography to painting, sculpture, video and multi-media installation, you’ll experience a diverse view of the Asian art scene through work from China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea, India, Indonesia, the Philippines and Southeast Asia. Friday, October 26 Saturday, October 27 Sunday, October 28 TIME: 3:00 – 4:00pm MEETING PLACE: Info Booth [nggallery id=82]

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