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The Face of the Chinese Avant-Garde

Ethan Cohen Fine Arts
18 Jay Street, between Hudson and Greenwich, 212-625-1250
Tribeca / Downtown
September 14 - October 17, 2009
Web Site

Currently, and through October 17th, Ethan Cohen Fine Arts is showcasing editioned work from some of the earliest Chinese Contemporary artists that launched China into the global art market. The exhibition will feature work from the artists: Fang Lijun, Zhang Xiaogang, Wang Guangyi, Yue Minjun, Qin Feng, Zhang Dali and Qi Zhilong.

It was the now iconic images from many of these artists that the world was first able to recognize the face of Chinese Contemporary Art. The Bloodline series by Zhang Xiaogang, the pop Great Criticism works by Wang Guangyi along with the bold portraits of Fang Lijun and Yue Minjun are still some of the most identifiable Chinese Contemporary Art images today.

One of the featured pieces of the exhibition is the brilliant scrolls from Fang Lijun’s 2005 series of woodcuts. These large panels centered with a “golden child” showcases the artists masterful use of bold lines and shapes to create powerful and poignant images. Currently Fang Lijun is having his 25 year retrospective at Germany’s Kunsthalle Bielefeld Museum.

Another work in the exhibition, Zhang Dali’s image of a young woman is actually created from his repeated early pseudonym, “AK-47”. Zhang renders his portrait in shades of grey creating from this powerful silk screen edition a conceptual exercise in both realism and abstraction. Also among the featured artworks in the exhibition is a preview of Qi Zhilong’s newest silkscreen image “China Girl, 2009”. This powerful portrait of a young Chinese woman is set as a metaphor for the new China. She unabashedly looks at the world while wearing what looks like a military shirt and ponytails and makeup. Modern, pretty, a little defiant… but always still Chinese.

This exhibition offers a diverse menu of the creative vision of the Chinese Avant-Garde and focuses on how these individual artists found the Faces that make up their China.
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