Globalisation, once nearly exclusively the realm of mega-corporations and big business, is spreading its wings in what one art critic has called the “post-passport generation.”
White Rabbit Gallery’s latest show, Hot Blood, showcases predominantly emerging artists from China and explores themes of history and identity in contemporary times, often through the use of new and cutting-edge technology. The exhibit was inspired by a visit to artists’ studios in China by curator David Williams two years ago. He saw a video work, Peng Yun’s Miss Melissa and Mr Fish at 2.31pm, which particularly caught his attention.
“I used this work as the backbone to put the show together, which focuses on works which are playful, irreverent – and often subversive – and examine subjects ranging from sexual desire and bodily frailty to spiritual ecstasy and traumatic memory.”
Many of the works, though specific to realities in modern China, are indeed concerned with global issues, such as life (lives?) lived on the internet, the submergence of traditions in favour of progress and how the physical body interacts with forces of change. Notes Williams, “Unrestricted by national borders or western expectation, the artists in Hot Blood have cast-off the markers of age, nationality and gender, to reflect on issues shaping the contemporary age.”
Different audiences – western, eastern, old, young, whatever – will naturally have different reactions to Hot Blood. According to Williams, “This concept of human frailty will talk to any audience regardless of nationality, but prepare to be shocked!”
Mar 15-Aug 4. White Rabbit Gallery, 30 Balfour St, Chippendale. FREE. Info: www.dangrove.net
By Olga Azar