The New York Times is now running stories that used to appear in the International Herald Tribune on their own site giving the paper better coverage of Eurpoe and, especially, Asia. This report from the Hong Kong art fair that closed over the weekend opens with an emphasis on the London galleries present. But further on, Joyce Hor-Chung Lau shows that there’s a new wave of Asian art emerging in the market:
Refreshingly, the Asian selection was no longer dominated by the big, laughing Mao faces, neon colors and flying babies of the Cynical Realism movement that first made Chinese contemporary art so hot. Some of the best pieces were rather quiet, like the delicate bronze trees by Wu Jian’an or Xinning Shi’s black and white paintings that play on 20th-century political leaders. Xu Bing, long known for his elegant, clever plays on Chinese calligraphy, had a tiny gold-hued metal cage with a mechanized bird inside. [ . . . ]
Tucked in the back were lesser-known names like Gallery Exit, which had modestly priced ink-on-paper works by Lin Xue, one of the few artists actually based in the city. Others included Simon Birch, a British-born artist, and Konstantin Bessmertny, a Soviet-born artist based in nearby Macao.
“You can’t be a cultural hub without a good local art scene,” said Claire Hsu, founder of the Hong Kong-based Asia Art Archive, which holds one of the world’s largest collections of research materials on Asian contemporary art. “The art fair is a good thing,” she said. “But we’re not going to become a cultural center because of one art fair.”
An Artistic Quest in High Gear (New York Times)