Yishu - Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art

Yishu Journal – the September/October 2012 Issue Now Available

Monday, September 3rd, 2012

Editor’s Note

Yishu 52, guest-edited by Shanghai-based curator Biljana Ciric, builds upon issues raised in the exhibition Institution for the Future, which she organized for the Chinese Arts Centre in Manchester, UK, during the Asia Triennial Manchester 2011. This exhibition explored new ways artists in Asia are contributing to the development of an art infrastructure within their respective communities.

The texts in Yishu 52 examine artist-initiated spaces, projects, and collectives in China, Vietnam, the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, and India. Through these examples we learn about different histories, cultural contexts, existing art infrastructures, and how artists are creating innovative institutional models within them. While we were unable to include every country within this region of Asia, the ones we selected have, for the most part, lesser-known histories within the broader international realm, and it is our aim that these texts will contribute to an increased understanding of the past, present, and future of artist initiatives within Asia and to provide a forum for these various nations to see themselves in relationship to each other.

Together, these texts look at opportunities that exist for artists within their particular art infrastructures where museums, galleries, foundations, as well as collectors, curators, critics, and audiences play a fundamental role. In most of Asia, these systems tend to be different from those in the West; their recent art histories have frequently been altered by destabilizing social, economic, or political interventions. Institution for the Future proposes that in many ways artistic practice has been taken out of the hands of artists, who, in order to become successful, too often are compelled to adhere to the protocols and rules of what has evolved into a huge, largely market-driven or politicized art industry, and presents the ways some are strategizing to regain control of their destinies.

We thank Biljana Ciric for proposing this idea to Yishu and also to all the contributors who have brought valuable insights into artist initiatives within these regions of Asia.

Keith Wallace

Image (top): Participants relax in the courtyard before stretching their vocal chords with experimental improvisationists Phil Minton and Audrey Chen for HomeWorkShop No. 13, 2012. Courtesy of HomeShop, Beijing.

Long March Space
cc foundation
Daniels Etheridge
Equinox Gallery
New Asia
US China Yes Youth Eduction Solutions