Qatar Museums (QM) chairperson HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani yesterday inaugurated the ‘What About the Art? Contemporary Art from China’ at the QM Gallery Al Riwaq in Doha.
Curated by the internationally acclaimed New York-based artist Cai Guo-Qiang, the exhibition features 15 contemporary Chinese artists and collectives born in Mainland China.
The large-scale exhibition, which will be held until July 16, is one of the highlights of the Qatar China 2016 Year of Culture.
“The ‘What About the Art? Contemporary Art from China’ is intended to inspire and resonate with young Arab artists who are pursuing creativity and reflecting on their own contribution to global culture,” Cai Guo-Qiang said.
The artists, who are working in a variety of media, include Jenova Chen, Hu Xiangqian, Hu Zhijun, Huang Yong Ping, Li Liao, Lian Shaoji, Liu Wei, Liu Xiaodong, Jennifer Wen Ma, Sun Yuan & Peng Yu, Wang Jianwei, Xu Bing, Xu Zhen, Yang Fudong and Zhou Chunya.
According to QM, Cai Guo-Qiang has devoted three years to the curatorial research and development of the exhibition.
Artworks exemplifying each artist’s unique artistic language and methodology are displayed in individual galleries. Their diverse bodies of works are across the media of painting, sculpture, installation, video, performance and interactive video game design.
Upon the invitation and commission to create nearly 600 clay sculptures, the 65-year-old peasant artist Hu Zhijun makes his debut in this exhibition.
Expounding famous contemporary Chinese artworks and events, Hu Zhijun’s installation make up a terrace-field of sand filled with clay sculptures.
The six-tonne giant “sea monster” Wu Zei by celebrated expatriate artist Huang Yong Ping is also featured at the exhibition.
QM said critical reception of contemporary Chinese art has largely been grounded in narratives of Chinese history and culture, focusing on the art market and the artworks’ socio-political context.
In response to this phenomenon, Cai Guo-Qiang has decided to display a selection of artworks being created by Chinese artists currently, aimed at highlighting the individual pursuit of creativity within contemporary Chinese art.
The curator hopes to provide visitors with a powerful and immersive experience, and through a shared appreciation of art and to establish a stronger relationship between Qatar and China.
Entry to the exhibition is free. It will be open from 10.30am to 5.30pm from Sunday to Wednesday except Tuesday; noon to 8pm on Thursdays, 2pm to 8pm on Fridays and noon to 8pm on Saturdays.

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