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Feb 28 2014

A Recipe for Success: Michael Chow aka Zhou Yinghua

by Ming Lin
A Recipe for Success: Michael Chow aka Zhou Yinghua

When Michael Chow enters a room, he commands an audience. With his sweeping gestures and boisterous tones, he speaks in overtures; it doesn’t matter what he is about to present so much as the presentation itself. This performative nature has served him well throughout the years—Chow has managed a successful restaurant business, which currently boasts six locations worldwide, and has brushed elbows with the cultural elite—he counts the late Jean-Michel Basquiat as having been one of his closest friends. Now, at the age of 75, the notorious Mr. Chow has turned his attention to art. How will his expertise in fine dining translate onto the canvas?

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Feb 26 2014

Concrete Love

by Jen Kwok
Concrete Love
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Feb 26 2014

Open Boundaries: Interview With Truong Tan

by Sylvia Tsai
Open Boundaries: Interview With Truong Tan

Challenging the status quo with his works since the early 1990s, Truong Tan is a trailblazer in Vietnam’s art scene. His sculptures, performances, drawings, installations, ceramics and paintings double as an intimate reflection of the artist while boldly speaks out about society at large. Perhaps best known for invoking themes that touch upon sexuality, Tan grew frustrated with Vietnam’s conservatism and moved from Hanoi to Paris in 1997, where he spent three years before returning home. Recently as part of the Guggenheim’s “No Country: Contemporary Art for South and Southeast Asia,” which traveled to Hong Kong’s Asia Society,  Tan visited the Fragrant Harbour for the first time, performing two works, Your Idea, I Dance For It (2014) and What is the Color of the Egg (2014), during the exhibition’s closing weekend. ArtAsiaPacific took this opportunity to speak to the artist about his work and his experiences working in Vietnam.

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Feb 21 2014

Best Intentions, Weak Promises

by Claire Sabel
Best Intentions, Weak Promises

The best part of “Our Best Intentions,” Einat Amir’s experimental performance piece, was the anticipation of engaging as both an audience member and an actor. Staged as part of Performa 13, by the Israeli arts non-profit organization Artis, “Our Best Intentions” utilized 20 participants to conduct an intimate performance with each other. Gathering on a chilly November evening, the group I took part in were invited to create an “introspective experience of therapy” contrasting with the “dramatic devices of performance.” Unfortunately, the dramatic, therapeutic, and experiential claims of the piece failed to materialize, and I left the space feeling that the performance’s intentions had been far from realized.  As each version is unique to the particular participants and moderators, I cannot claim to speak for the piece as a whole, but while intriguing in premise, this iteration failed to provoke as promised.

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Feb 18 2014

Bharti Kher’s “Misdemeanours”

by Katherine Tong
Bharti Kher's "Misdemeanours"

Shanghai is a historic port which first opened up to foreign trade more than 100 years ago. It is therefore fitting that the Rockbund Art Museum (RAM)—a government-affiliated museum inaugurated in the former Royal Asiatic Society building in 2010—recently put up a major solo exhibition of an artist who is not of Chinese origin. “Misdemeanours” is both a survey of Indian artist Bharti Kher’s 15-year solo practice and a series of new site-specific works. The exhibition showcases her highly receptive nature in response to the everyday environment.

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Feb 13 2014

Concrete Love

by Jen Kwok
Concrete Love
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Feb 11 2014

Missed Connection: Tino Sehgal in Sydney

by Michael Young
Missed Connection: Tino Sehgal in Sydney

Whether Tino Sehgal’s performance pieces are high art or pretentious nonsense hardly matters. Last week at Sydney’s Art Gallery of New South Wales, audiences were enrapt as the Berlin-based artist’s team of performers sang and danced into existence his 2005 work This is so contemporary in the vestibule of the gallery.

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Feb 07 2014

Making History: Colombo Art Biennale

by Kurchi Dasgupta
Making History: Colombo Art Biennale

The third edition of the Colombo Art Biennale (CAB 14), “Making History,” opened on the balmy afternoon of January 30.  Spread across seven venues, filled with thought-provoking sculptures, photographs, texts, installations, drawings, videos, performances and paintings, the works of 59 artists from 16 countries explore art’s relation to history. War, power, gender and violence are recurring themes that weave the exhibits together—not surprising given the host country’s recent war-torn history. In a way, this biennale seems a conclusive remark to its previous iterations including the 2009 “ Imagining Peace” and 2012 “Becoming.” “Making History” can be praised for its well thought-out curatorial strategy. The venues take you across the scenic city of Colombo into the classical architecture of colonial buildings and reinvigorated warehouses in one breath. Exciting artworks abound, frequently breaking into performance or sidewalk improvisations.

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