UMAG Lecture Series: Re-examining Modernity and Contemporaneity through Chinese Art (2022/23)
Zheng Chongbin’s Vision of Ink: From 1980s Reforming China to the Global Digital (Art) World
Date: Thursday, 24 February 2022
Time: 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm (HKT) / 9:00 am – 10:00 am (GMT)
Mode of Delivery: Online via Zoom, registration required
Speaker: Dr Alina Sinelnyk
Moderator: Dr Florian Knothe | Director, University Museum and Art Gallery, The University of Hong Kong
Discussant: Dr Sarah Ng | Curator, University Museum and Art Gallery, The University of Hong Kong
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Using a manifesting case-study example of ink works by globally recognised Chinese-born American artist Zheng Chongbin (born 1961), this paper sheds light on selected key milestones amongst many others, which contemporary Chinese ink art encountered at the turn of the twenty-first century. The discussed milestones relate to the rediscovery of Western modern art in 1980s post-Mao China, the widespread phenomenon of migration from China at the turn of the 1990s as well as the very recent international boom of Chinese ink art in both pictorial and digital media. By encountering first-hand these milestones, Zheng Chongbin formulated his own unique takes on China’s centuries-old medium of ink, which, as this paper shows, pertinently demonstrate how, despite being culturally and historically rooted, ink can be the medium and concept of a much broader international and contemporary relevance.
Dr Alina Sinelnyk, PhD, is a UK-based art historian, whose research focuses on contemporary Chinese-ink medium paintings and installations as well as wider global contemporary art. In 2021 Alina obtained her doctoral degree from the University of Edinburgh, as part of which she explored Western institutional approaches to curating contemporary Chinese-ink art, using the case-study example of works by California-based globally recognised artist Zheng Chongbin. In addition to academic research and teaching, Alina also worked at international auction houses, such as Sotheby’s (Contemporary Art) in London and Bonhams (Asian Art) in Edinburgh.