Chinese and Asian American Artists Showcase Works in San Jose
The San Jose Museum of Art (SJMA) will open two new exhibitions starting in February. The first, entitled Rising Dragon, Contemporary Chinese Photography, begins February 2 (through June 30) and features 100 photographs by 36 Chinese artists who explore the drastic social and economic changes taking place in China. Made between the Dragon years of 2000 and 2012—an auspicious time in Chinese cosmology— many of the artists’ portraits, landscapes, cityscapes, and scenes of daily modern life depicted in the images contain undercurrents of China’s rich artistic legacy. At the same time, the images seem to fast-forward into the future with a very “now” visual style filled with humor, artifice, and pop excess.
Rising Dragon will feature photographs by Adou, Cao Fei, Chen Qiulin, Chen Wei, Huang Yan, Jiang Pengyi, Li Lang, Li Wei, Liu Ren, Liu Zheng, Liyu + Liubo, Lu Guang, Lu Hao, Maleonn (Ma Liang), Muge, O Zhang, Peng Rong, Qiu Zhijie, Rong Rong, Sun Ji, Tamen, Tian Taiquan, Wang Jin, Wang Qingsong, Wang Wusheng, Wang Fen, Xu Zhen, Yang Yi, Yao Lu, Yu Haibo, Zhang Huan, Zhang Lijie, Zhang Xiao, and Zhou Hai.
The second exhibition, entitled New Stories from the Edge of Asia: This/That, opens February 21 (through September 15), and will feature work by California-based artists of Asian descent who explore new narrative territory using animation, digital techniques, video, and film. The exhibition includes works by Erica Cho, Candice Lin, Mike Lai, Tran T. Kim-Trang, and the artist collective Mail Order Brides/M.O.B.
The opening event and reception for both Rising Dragon and New Stories from the Edge of Asia will be held on February 21. Artist Mike Lai will stage an “epic battle” between “Team Bruce Lee” and Aztec warriors in a performance art piece at the opening reception. In his site-specific, interactive performances, Lai often wears the iconic yellow jumpsuit that Bruce Lee wore in the movie Game of Death. Fascinated with the way Kung Fu genre films inform Asian cultural identities, Lai creates spectacles in which “Team Bruce Lee” takes on other iconic cultural or pop culture figures.