Part of the 2013 Margaret Mead Film Festival
Co-presented by Margaret Mead Film Festival and Asia Society
American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY
Mika Mattila, 2013 | 90 minutes | Finland, China
New York premiere | Director in attendance
Set in China's turbulent contemporary art world, Chimeras offers an intense reflection on modern Chinese identity. The story interweaves the parallel narratives of a young man taking the Beijing art scene by storm and an aging international pop-art star questioning his own legacy. When an American curator invites Liu Gang to show his artwork in the most prestigious gallery in China, the young photographer from modest means is thrust into a whirlwind of Westernized luxury, embassy parties, and promises of an international career. He struggles to balance his life as an artist with his responsibilities to his family and his fiancée. As Liu begins to wonder who he is and where he is heading, his questions find an echo in Wang Guangyi — an older, established artist who achieved international fame, enormous wealth, and artistic fulfillment during the "second revolution" of the 1980s. Wang was on the forefront of modernizing China with revolutionary Western avant-garde ideas, but now he is filled with doubt about the dominance of outside influence in the Chinese art world. He bitterly rails against the value of the Western ideals he once championed, and his story, juxtaposed with Liu's, raises profound questions about authenticity and cultural voice in art.
Asia Society member discount: Call American Museum of Natural History box office at 212-769-5200 and mention Asia Society for tickets at member rate ($10).
Kaufmann Theater, Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street, New York, NY