Must-See at SFMOMA
By jack.flynn on Aug 04, 2008
Half-Life of a Dream: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Logan Collection
This fall the hottest technologies and applications can be found at Oracle OpenWorld. The hottest art is right across the street. Here's what Marianna Stark, our featured guest blogger from the Stark Guide, has to say about SFMOMA's big fall show. When you're at the conference, take a break and check it out.
The art market's hottest genre right now is contemporary Chinese painting and photography. In the last three years, collectors have driven international auction prices to record highs. The current value placed on this genre stems from the fact that contemporary Chinese artists have come of age during a time of unprecedented cultural freedom, which began timidly after Chairman Mao's death in 1976 and in earnest after the 1989 Tianamen Square protests. Trained exclusively in Socialist Realism (think 1950s Communist Russia propaganda posters), these artists were exposed to the entire history of Western art all at once, and as a result their urgent large-scale work is schizophrenic, controversial, and thrilling.
Once you've seen the show, if you're itching for more (or to buy), head to Limn Gallery, the only gallery in the Bay Area that specializes in Chinese contemporary. The gallery is showing the work of Zhang Xianyong (on view through October 5). Thirty-seven year old Zhang Xianyong's photographs depict elaborately staged narrative scenes reminiscent of melodramatic Chinese Opera. Some pieces were inspired by the work of European Old Masters like The Last Supper by Leonardo da Vinci.
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
151 Third Street, between Mission and Howard Streets