On April 18, 2013, Zheng Shengtian, managing editor of Yishu: Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art gave the lecture “From Cultural Revolution to Avant-Garde: The Rise of Chinese Contemporary Art" at the Glenbow Museum in Calgary.

The talk was part of the Asia Contemporary Speaker Series, a partnership between the Canadian Art Foundation and the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada’s National Conversation on Asia and its sponsors.

Zheng Shengtian is a scholar, artist and independent curator. For more than thirty years, he worked at China Academy of Art in Hangzhou as professor and chair of the oil painting department. He was the co-founder of the Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and currently is a trustee of Vancouver Art Gallery. He has been a member of the academic committee for the Shanghai Biennale since 1998 and was a co-curator of the 4th Shanghai Biennale in 2004.

Zheng has organized numerous exhibitions, including “Shanghai Modern” at Villa Stuck, Munich, in 2004 and “Art and China’s Revolution” at Asia Society, New York, in 2009. He is the senior curator of Asia for the 2013–2014 Vancouver Biennale, just as he was for the 2009–2011 edition. He is also a frequent contributor to periodicals and catalogues about contemporary Chinese and Asian art. As an artist, his artwork has been shown in China, the United States and Canada since 1960s.

The Asia Contemporary Speaker Series explored the rise of Asia on the international scene as one of the most compelling stories in contemporary art. Provocative artworks command ever-higher prices as markets expand, and impressive new museums, schools and biennials continue to proliferate. Hong Kong, Singapore, Dubai, Tokyo and Beijing have established themselves as major art-world hubs, competing directly with London and New York. In order to understand this phenomenon and its connection to global movements of economic and political power, the Asia Contemporary Speaker Series brought five recognized leaders in the field to speak in cities across Canada in 2012 and 2013.

To view more lectures presented by the Canadian Art Foundation, please visit canadianart.ca/lectures.

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