Culture, class, excellence at OKC MOA

Song Kun (Chinese, b. 1977). Burning Rebirth, 2011. Oil on canvas. © Song Kun, courtesy of the artist and Boers-Li Gallery, Beijing.

(Oklahoma City, OK) My Generation: Young Chinese Artists began showing at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art October 25. The first U.S. exhibition to focus solely on the post-Mao generation of Chinese artists will remain on view through January 18, 2015.

Curated by Barbara Pollack, My Generation offers a surprising look at how China's mega-development has impacted its youth culture and spawned new art trends.

"To see the work of new and emerging artists from China is something of a revelation," said OKCMOA President and CEO E. Michael Whittington. "Museum visitors will discover an exciting global artistic conversation in a breathtaking variety of media including painting, photography, video, and installation. We're honored to present My Generation and commend the Tampa Museum of Art and Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg for their leadership in contemporary art." The two museums organized the exhibit.

A leading arts journalist who has covered the Chinese art scene since the late 1990s, Curator Pollack said, "Young Chinese artists are breaking out in ways that challenge and defy the styles of an older generation of Chinese artists already known in the West. Despite language barriers and cultural differences, these artists work in a truly global vocabulary which will be readily understood by American audiences."

My Generation: Young Chinese Artistsis an extended look at a new generation of artists emerging in mainland China since 2000 - the year China opened its doors to international artists and that Chinese artists began to command attention on the world's stage. The exhibition examines contemporary China through the lens of five themes: gender roles and intimate relationships, family ties, the urbanized landscape, religion and reflections on Buddhism, and politics and gestures of rebellion.

All 26 artists in this exhibition were born after 1976 - the end of the Cultural Revolution - and most are the product of China's one-child policy. Growing up in a country with a high-powered market economy, they have been exposed to global art movements through the internet and from being educated in China's art academies. They are ambitious, determined, technically sophisticated with much to say about their homeland - positive and negative - and they deftly navigate around the restrictions of censorship and cultural differences.

The Oklahoma City Museum of Art is located at 415 Couch Drive in downtown Oklahoma City. For information, visit

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