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Between Consumerism and Nostalgia for the Mao Era: New History Group, Song Dong, and Mao Tongqiang

고동연 1

1성균관대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This study concentrates on ambivalent attitudes and circumstances found among the Chinese people toward the recent development of consumer culture on the one hand andnostalgia for the Mao era on the other, through three notable examples of artists in Chinese contemporary art. Ren Jian’s New History Group, Song Dong, and Mao Tongqiang have been working in the areas of performance arts, participatory projects,and installation arts, which are considered as more experimental artistic genres in China. More importantly, Song Dong and Mao Tongqiang installed everyday objects used by ordinary Chinese people during the ear of the Cultural Revolution as a way of bringing viewer’s critical and ambiguous reactions toward prosperous consumer culture in China from the late 1990s onwards. By focusing on these three artists mostly working inside China, this study also aims to provide alternative ways of looking at the influence of consumer culture in Chinese art, beyond the cases of more internationally recognizable Political Pop or renowned object-based artists such as Huang Yong Ping, Xu Bing, and Guo-Qiang.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.