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    Art Radar Asia News conducts original research and scans global news sources to bring you selected topical stories about the taste-changing, news-making and the up and coming in Asian contemporary art.

Posts Tagged ‘Chinese art books’

Outlook for Chinese art market – interview Larry Warsh – Arttactic podcast

Posted by artradar on May 26, 2009


Larry Warsh of AWAsia in New York, a private organisation which provides Chinese contemporary art sourcing and curatorial services to global institutions such as MOMA and the Getty Museum, talks about his take on the outlook for the Chinese art market on Arttactic’s newly-launched free podcast service.

Warsh’s expertise lies in Chinese painting and photography by the first generation of historically important Chinese artists who came to prominence between 1989 and 1999.

Topics discussed include:

  • the evolution of US interest in Chinese art – Americans ‘came late to the party’, Christopher Phillips’ show at ICP ‘Past Present Future’ 2004-5 was the start


  • why the Cynical Realists appealed to the West



  • recommended books about Chinese art


  • weaknesses of Chinese art scene (as yet undeveloped education, infrastructure and curatorial skills)


  • opportunities in the market – Chinese photography


The promotion of Chinese art is Warsh’s self-confessed mission so it is not surprising that the bulk of the interview claims great investment opportunities for selected Chinese artists. He suggests that scarcity of supply (he says there are only 30-40 historically important contemporary artists) and the future potential of the Chinese buyer base (favourable demographics, population size and a growing interest in contemporary art) means that prices are bound to rise.

Asked why the top auction houses seem to be featuring less Chinese art in their recent sales, Warsh explains that he sees this as evidence of the scarcity of supply of quality Chinese art rather than lack of demand.

We are not quite convinced by this argument. If supply is scarce but the demand still exists, then the pieces that have been coming to the market recently would have made heady prices but instead they have fallen along with other art categories and asset classes. In Hong Kong’s Spring sales 2009 works by Zhang Huan failed to sell at Sotheby’s and at Christe’s a Cai Guo Qiang edition ‘Kaleidoscope Time Tunnel’ and a Yue Min Jun lot were passed in.

No matter, we like controversial opinions. Arttactic promises more podcasts with ‘key’ figures so we look forward to hearing a variety of views. To listen to this one go to ArtTactic Podcasts and search for Larry Warsh May 22 2009.

Unfortunately we cannot give you a direct page link – we hope that ArtTactic will iron out this wrinkle in its promising new service.

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Posted in Auctions, Books, Chinese, Globalisation, Interviews, Market watch, Museum collectors, New York | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Top 5 books on Chinese art by Chinese art specialist, Pippa Dennis

Posted by artradar on October 12, 2008

Contributed by China art scene specialist Pippa Dennis, founder of Asia Art Forum.
Nine Lives, The Birth of Avant-Garde Art in New China
Karen Smith, Scalo 2008
Easy to read, insightful account tracking the careers of the main protagonists to spearhead the emergence of contemporary art in modern China. Karen Smith has lived in China since 1992 and many of these artists are personal friends. This intimate relationship gives her account an added edge as the book traces the story of their rise against a backdrop of dramatic economic and social transformation in China.
Mahjong Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection
Feng Boyi, Christoph Heinrich, Pi Li and Uli Sigg 2005
The book to accompany the exhibition that toured the world, bringing the largest collection of Chinese contemporary art to the international public. Uli Sigg, formerly the Swiss ambassador in Beijing, began collecting in the early 1990s and has since amassed a total of 1,200 works. This catalogue presents a selection of over 200 works but its essays by some of China’s most prominent writers and critics give the catalogue its must read status.
Semiotic Warfare, The Chinese Avant-Garde: 1979-1989
Martine Koeppel-Yang, Hong Kong, 2003
 One of the few English language academic books focusing on the emergence of the Chinese Avant-Garde and placing its development within its cultural, economic and political context. This work is critical in its ability to contextualise what was happening in China’s artistic development with what was happening on the international stage.
Between Past and Future
Wu Hung and Christopher Phillips 2004
Essential reading for anyone interested in lens-based work coming out of China. This book catalogues the first exhibition to comprehensively examine experimental photography and video work from China since the mid 90s. Excellent essay by veteran curator of photography Christopher Phillips.
Inside Out: New Chinese Art
Gao Minglu, University of California Press, 1998
Another book to accompany an exhibition. This time Gao Minglu, one China’s great theorists, curates the exhibition and edits this publication. Inside Out is a survey show that presents work from Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and overseas Chinese artists. Gao succeeds in setting out the historic and cultural distinctions between these regions whilst examining issues of modernity and identity that relate to all four.
About Pippa Dennis
Pippa Dennis has been living in Shanghai for the last four years and worked for Eastlink Gallery before establishing Asia Art Forum. She has an MA in Art History from St Andrews University. For more on lectures and programmes offered by Asia Art Forum
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