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Xu Bing  

Melissa Chiu

(b Chongqing, 1955).

Chinese installation artist . Xu Bing spent much of his childhood in Beijing where his parents were professors at Beijing University. He said that being surrounded by books during this formative period in his life gave him an intense interest in them. Xu studied printmaking at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing (1987). One of Xu’s most memorable early works is Tian Shu ( A Book from the Sky , 1987–91), which was created during the 1985 New Wave Movement in China—a period of new-found freedom for artistic experimentation. Tian Shu consisted of reams of paper printed with Chinese characters, each one in some way incorrect, so that the cumulative effect is a library of nonsensical words. The labour needed to create this art work was substantial, taking the artist nearly four years to complete carving the individual characters into woodblocks. The reams of printed paper were exhibited in three different ways: as traditional hand-bound books, suspended large scrolls, and wall posters. ...


Chinese, 20th–21st century, male.

Born 1968, in Sichuan Province.

Painter, illustrator. Portraits.

Feng Zhengjie graduated as a master of fine arts from the oil painting department of the Sichuan Academy of Arts in 1995 and began teaching in the fine arts department of the Beijing Normal Institute. Feng’s work borders on kitsch-like caricature. He uses the garish colours of Pop Art and popular culture, as well as traditional Chinese iconography. Feng is a central figure of the Gaudy art movement, which emerged in the mid-1990s and was influenced by Pop Art, employing bright, garish colours and referencing advertising imagery. Feng’s large-scale portraits resemble Andy Warhol’s prints of celebrities....


Japanese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active also active in the USA.

Born 1953, in Shizuoka.

Graphic designer, illustrator.

Katsumi Komagata eventually settled in Tokyo, where in 1986 he opened his own publishing house, One Stroke . Earlier, from 1977 to 1983, he lived in the USA. From ...


Chinese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1947, in Shanghai.

Painter. Landscapes.

Tang Muli started drawing on his own, learning from books and drawing portraits of his co-workers. He gained admittance to the central academy of arts in Beijing and on graduating won a scholarship to study abroad. He chose to go to the Royal College of Art, London, from which he obtained his Master of Arts in ...


Chinese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 1948, in Chang-Hua, Taiwan.

Draughtsman, illustrator.

Tsai Chih-Chung is one of the best-known comic strip illustrators today both in China itself and among the Chinese diaspora. His adaptations of the classical texts of the Chinese philosophers into comic strips have been translated into many languages, have been phenomenally successful and are used for study at Princeton University. Among his works are ...


Chinese, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in Iceland; Hamburg, Germany; and Shanghai.

Born 1960, in Zhoushan, China.

Installation artist, performance artist, book artist, painter.

In 1986, Wu graduated from the Zhejiang Academy of Fine Arts in Hangzhou and conceived his installation and performance series Red Humour...