'Avant-garde' Art Groups in China, 1979-1989 (Book)


'Avant-garde' Art Groups in China gives a critical account of four of the most significant avant-garde Chinese art groups and associations of the late 1970s and ’80s. It is made up largely of conversations conducted by the author with members of these organizations that provide insight into the circumstances of artistic production during the decade leading up to the Tiananmen Square Massacre of 1989. The conversations are supported by an extended introduction and other comprehensive notes that give a detailed overview of the historical circumstances under which the groups and associations developed.


China’s Post-Maoist ‘Avant-garde’ in Context: Modern and Contemporary Art in China, 1911–2011 

The Stars – The Northern Art Group – The Pond Association – Xiamen Dada 

The Stars (Xingxing

Conversations with Members of The Stars 
– Yan Li 
– Qu Leilei 

The Northern Art Group (Beifang yishu qunti

Conversations with Members of the Northern Art Group 
– Wang Guangyi 
– Shu Qun 
– Ka Sang 

The Pond Association (Chi she

Conversations with Members of the Pond Association 
– Zhang Peili 
– Wang Qiang 
– Song Ling 

Xiamen Dada (Xiamen Dada

A Conversation with Members of Xiamen Dada 
– Huang Yongping, Yu Xiaogang, Lin Jiahua and Jiao Yaoming

'The extreme precision of the questions and the research for the details – aiming to avoid any ambiguity and to clarify all the unclear points of the story – make the essay an advisable read first of all for the experts and students, then for the contemporary art enthusiasts. ' 

Gabriele Girolamini, Drome Magazine

'Paul Gladstone's book fills gaps in our knowledge of the contemporary Chinese art scene and provides an inspiring and mind-opening narrative' 

The China Quarterly

'[an] original…approach. […] Gladston has performed a signal function in making a good deal of... information available now, and indicating many paths for future researchers to follow. ' 

John Clark, China Journal

'Paul Gladston provides a careful summary of a good deal of the empirical research on post-Maoist “avant-garde” art ... As an introductory analysis for many students of art history or modern Chinese culture, this book will be a good primer' 

The China Journal, John Clark
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