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Performance and Imagination: Chinese Photography 1911-2014
September 19 - January 25, 2015
ren shulin
© Ren Shulin, September 1985, Beijing no. 171 High School, Classroom (1985)

Performance and Imagination: Chinese Photography 1911-2014

Stavanger Art Museum is the first European museum to present an exhibition featuring photographs made by well-known and lesser-known Chinese artists from each decade of the twentieth century, in concert with eleven contemporary artists.

The exhibition concentrates on photos of staged motifs and photos as stagings or mise-en-scène. Organized chronologically, it begins with pictures from the 1910s where the world-famous Beijing opera star Mei Langang (1894-1961) appears in fantastic costumes and poses. The exhibition also offers glimpses from Chinese photographic history: images made by pioneers of ‘art photography’ from the 1920s and ‘30s, official political photos from the ‘40s and ‘50s, works from the time of the Cultural Revolution in the ‘60s and ‘70s, the more open period in the ‘80s and performance photos from the ‘90s. The great diversity of contemporary photography manifests itself through a selection of works by Birdhead (Song Tao and Ji Weiyu), Chen Wei, Chu Chu, Lee Chia-yu, Liang Yue, Ma Qiusha, Rong Rong & Inri, Wang Tong and You Li. Several works are on show for the first time.

The exhibition is produced by Stavanger Art Museum and curated by Per Bjarne Boym.

Join in at the open and admission free events on 19 and 20 September:
Exhibition opening, Kapittel talk and Open seminar on Chinese Photography. Follow the link for the full program.

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