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Avatars and Antiheroes.
A Guide to Contemporary Chinese Artists.

Edited by Claudia Albertini.
Kodansha International, 2008. 176 pp., Numerous illustrations., 10x7¾".

Publisher's Description
Showcases forty of the latest and most relevant contemporary artists from China. Featuring stunning full-color plates of the work of leading painters, photographers, sculptors, performance artists, video artists, and even a fireworks artist, this book gives a fascinating insight into modern Chinese society and its vibrant contemporary art scene.

Chinese contemporary art is currently enjoying a worldwide boom, fetching record-breaking prices at auction houses around the globe. China's rapid transition from communism to consumerism, and the dizzying changes brought by urbanization, globalization, and new technologies have created a fascinating explosion of contemporary art overwhelmingly concerned with the search for self-identity in a society that, from Confucius to Mao, has traditionally disregarded individualism for the collective good.

Avatars and Antiheroes reflects the schizophrenic undercurrents of a nation in continuous fast-forward. From the Cynical Realism and Political Pop movements associated with the post-Tiananmen generation of artists such as Yue Minjun whose grinning representations of himself as antihero seem to mock the revolutionary heroes of old, to the pop-culture generation spearheaded by Cao Fei whose digital avatars live in a world without borders, this book showcases the work of the most important contemporary artists to emerge from China in recent years.

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