Minsheng Lecture:Jie VS Curators:


Minsheng Lecture



Liu Xujun


Martina Koeppel-Yang, Yang Jiechang, Wang Yiquan

What kind of curators do artists need?

Guests: Martina Koeppel-Yang, Yang Jiechang, Wang Yiquan
Host: Liu Xujun
Date: November 9, 2019
Time: 14:00-15:30
Venue: Multimedia Interactive Hall (1F), Shanghai Minsheng Art Museum

The origin of the word “curating” lies at a Latin verb “curare”, meaning to look after. In ancient Rome, a “curator” was a supervisor of public bathroom, while in the Middle Ages, a “curatus” is a pastor serving the souls. It was since 1970s when curating becomes a profession, that “curator” is used to address those who organize exhibitions. “The rise of the curator as creator,” as critic and author Bruce Altshuler called it, the conception of exhibition. In Recent years, curators are getting more and more attention, but also more doubtful remarks. As the intermediary of an exhibition, curators initially served for the decentralization for artists. However, curators are now taking over the authorship from artists through recentralization. How to keep a relationship between artist and curator purely collaborative? What should they do to maximize the creative potential in each other’s work? While Yang Jiechang’s solo exhibition is on, we invite Liu Xujun, the chief editor of YISHU-Artco magazine to be the host of this lecture. Artist Yang Jiechang, the curator of his exhibition Martina Koeppel-Yang, and curator Wang Yiquan are invited to have a conversation about the relationship between curators and artists.


Liu Xujun

The chief editor of YISHU-Artco. PhD of Philosophy at Tongji University. Engaged in art criticism. He is also a poet who writes for columns. He has published Purana and co-authored Cultural Criticism: Theory and Practice of Cultural Philosophy.


Martina Koeppel-Yang

Martina Koeppel-Yang is an independent scholar and curator with a PhD in East Asian Art History and Sinology from the University of Heidelberg. She has written extensively on the subject of contemporary Chinese art, and curated and co-curated many exhibitions on the subject. She is a member of the editorial board of Yishu, Journal for Contemporary Chinese Art, member of the editorial board of Red Flag Collection, member of the advisory board of Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art (JCCA), and board member of Asia Art Archive, Hong Kong.
Her exhibitions include: Leased Legacy - Hong Kong 1997 (Museum for Arts and Crafts, Frankfurt, Germany, 1997), Infiltration: Idylls and Visions (Guangdong Museum of Art, Guangzhou 2006), Surplus Value and Accumulation - Canton Express (Tang Contemporary, Beijing, 2006), Ink-Life-Taste the 5th Shenzhen International Ink Painting Biennale (Shenzhen, 2006), The Street is My Heart - Adel Abdessemed ( Libreria Borges, Guangzhou 2007) Onda Anomala part of Manifesta 7 (Trento, Italy 2008), Becoming Intense, Becoming Animal, Becoming ...(Heidelberg University 2009), Advance through Retreat (Rockbund Museum of Art, Shanghai 2014), The Writings of Today are a Promise for Tomorrow - Yangjiang Group (Palazzo Morosini, Venice, 2015), 7+1 Luckily you are here (CIGE, Beijing 2015), Xiao Kaiyu - Inside and Outside the Window (Bonacon/ Guangzhou 2017), Heimat- The First Guang'an international Field Art Biennial (Guang'an 2018), Six Two Zen - Yang Jiechang (Tang Contemporary, Beijing 2018), I giardini possibili/The possible gardens - Tian Dexi (Cherimus, Sardinia, 2019), Images du Lingnan, (Centre Culture! de la Chine a Paris, 2019)

Yang Jiechang

Yang Jiechang was born in Foshan (Canton, China) in 1956. He grew up during the Cultural Revolution and the beginning of his artistic career coincided with China’s political opening in the late 1970s and 1980s. His first appearance in Europe and trigger for his emigration was his participation in the exhibition Magiciens de la terre in the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris in 1989. Yang was trained in the techniques of paper mounting, calligraphy and traditional Chinese painting at the Fine Arts Academy Guangzhou (1978 -1982), where he taught until 1988. Living in Paris and Heidelberg (Germany) since 1989 he participated in numerous exhibitions around the globe:
Magiciens de la terre (Centre Pompidou, Paris, 1989), Chine demain pour hier (France 1990), Silent Energy (MoMA Oxford, 1993), Shenzhen International Ink Biennial (1998, 2000, 2002), Shanghai Biennale (Shanghai 1999/2015), Pause - Gwanju Biennial (Korea, 2002), Zone of Urgency - 50th Venice Biennial (2003), Guangzhou Triennal (Canton, China, 2003/2005), La Force de l'Art - 1st Paris Triennial (Paris, 2006), Liverpool Biennal (Liverpool, 2007), Istanbul Biennal (Istanbul, 2007), Lyon Biennale (Lyon, France, 2009), Moscow Biennial (Moscow, 2009), Ink Art, Past as Present in Contemporary China (Metropolitan Museum, New York, 2013), French May (Hong Kong 2001/2015), Carambolages (Grand Palais, Paris 2016), The Street,(MAXXI, Rome, 2018), Art and China after 1989: Theater of the World (Guggenheim Museum, New York/Bilbao/Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, 2017-2018).

Wang Yiquan

An artist and curator now living in Shanghai. His researching interest lies in performance, movies, urban space, the relationship between art and economy. Based on these topics, his artistic practice has evolved into various facets in the last 10 years. Curating exhibitions and organizing art events comprise vital parts of Wang Yiquan’s artistic practice. In 2016, he founded Central Club, a platform for organizing events such as lectures, performances, screening party, workshop, etc. In 2018, he co-curated 2018 Contemporary Theatre Biennale, in which he presented the new trends of mainland China’s performing art at landmarks of Shenzhen. In May, 2019, he planned the second “Collective Action” at Shanghai Xintiandi. The event involved numerous artists who create using the street materials.