For many of us, Facebook, Twitter, and even Google have become our “gateways to the world,” as these social networks often provide for the majority of the world’s daily news, information and entertainment needs. Yet, 1.3 billion people, roughly 20% of the world’s population, have never used Google or Facebook, nor even know that they exist. Not wanting to be left in the dark ages and fail to miss the social networking party, the Chinese government started taking matters into their own hands. And in order to establish a harmonious society, the People’s Republic of China created their own politically compatible version of Facebook, Twitter and Google. Yet this feeble attempt at containment is no match for a new art force on the web: Art Parasites.
It is no longer a secret that the influence of Chinese social networks is growing day by day and that its art scene is flourishing at an unprecedented rate. But besides Ai Weiwei, many art lovers may not be very familiar with other Chinese artists––the same holds for Chinese citizens interested in art. This is why we are making sure they will have access to great articles about art around Berlin and New York, as well as China (coming soon!).
In the mean time, we’ll be keeping a close eye on Chinese galleries and artists in Berlin, starting with Zhong Gallery and Alexander Ochs. Both of these spaces have sister galleries in China (Beijing). Since January of 2012, Zhong gallery became the first Chinese owned/operated gallery in Europe. Founded by Gaowen Zhu and headed by Jiangnan Wang, Zhong gallery has focused on building that much-needed bridge between Eastern and Western art. The same goes for Alexander Ochs, who since 1997 has been bringing some of the most important names in Chinese contemporary art to the walls of the Mitte gallery—names like Fang Lijun, Yang Shaobin, Yue Minjun, Xu Bing, and, of course, the (in)famous Ai Weiwei. This is only the beginning, stay tuned for more updates as our Chinese coverage develops!
Article by Carmen Herold & Jovanny Varela-Ferreyra