Zhang Hongtu: Expanding Visions of a Shrinking World
Illustrations: 120 color illustrations
Published: December 2015
Co-published by the Queens Museum and Duke University Press.
Contributors: Julia F. Andrews, Alexandra Chang, Tom Finkelpearl, Michael Fitzgerald, Wu Hung, Luchia Meihua Lee, Morgan Perkins, Kui Yi Shen, Jerome Silbergeld, Eugenie Tsai, Thuy Linh Nguyen Tu, Lilly Wei
In this book, leading art experts, art historians, and critics review the life, career, and artistic development of New York based Chinese artist Zhang Hongtu. A pioneer in contemporary Chinese art, Zhang created the first example of "China Pop" art, and his oeuvre is as diverse, intellectually complex, and engaging as it is entertaining. From painting and sculpture to computer generated works and multimedia projects, Zhang's art is equally rich in terms of China's history and its current events, containing profound reflections on China's oldest cultural habits and contemporary preoccupations. He provides a model of cross-cultural interaction designed to make Asian and Western audiences look more closely at each other and at themselves to recognize the beliefs they hold and the unexamined values they adhere to.
From his early work in China during the Cultural Revolution to his decades as an artist in New York, Zhang reflects the complex attitudes of a scholar-artist toward modernity, as well as toward Asian and Western societies and himself. Placing Zhang in the context of his cultural milieu both in China and in the Chinese immigrant artist community in America, this volume's contributors examine his adaptations of classic art to reflect a contemporary sensibility, his relation to Cubism and Social Realism, his collaboration with the celebrated fashion designer Vivienne Tam, and his visual critique of China's current environmental crisis. Zhang's work will be on display at the Queens Museum in New York City from October 17, 2015 to March 6, 2016.