Artist Cai Guo-qiang raises questions in new exhibition

By Yang Yang ( China Daily ) Updated: 2016-05-05 08:57:05

Artist Cai Guo-qiang raises questions in new exhibition

Cai Guo-qiang says a "China angle" is not enough to elevate the nation's contemporary art.[Photo provided to China Daily]

Cai's gunpowder drawing Homeland sold for 15 million yuan ($2.38 million) at a Christie's auction in Shanghai in 2013.

While the Chinese art market has boomed since 2006, there is still a lot that artists can do in terms of their contributions to the art world, he says. Cai has similar expectations from the country's film and fashion industries.

"When Westerners talk about Chinese contemporary art, they automatically lower their standards," he says.

Cai was in Beijing in April to talk about the exhibition he has organized for the Qatar Museums Gallery Al Riwaq in Doha-What About the Art?: Contemporary Art from China. The exhibition, running through July 16, examines ideas in Chinese modern art and whether they influence the global scene.

In recent years, many artistic works from China have set records at auctions and the art market in China is doing well, he says.

"But take away the 'China angle' from such works and what do you get about the art itself? What about the innovation?"

To find the answers, Cai and his team chose 14 Chinese artists and one artist-collaborative duo from more than 200 through a three-year process.

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