Thursday, 20 November 2008

Vital; International Live artists of Chinese Descent

image; courtesy Chinese Arts Centre.

Chinese Arts Centre have just published Vital; International Live artists of Chinese descent. It is a collection of stories, ssays, reviews and pictures exploring Chinese live art with particular focus on the Vital International Chinese Live Art Festivals. The UK publication launch will be on 15 Feb 2009 at National Review of Live Art, Glasgow

This exciting new publication documents the two festivals through memories, interviews, essays, reviews and images which together form a comprehensive scrapbook of Chinese live art.

Contributors include artists such as Lee Wen, Becky Ip, Po Shui and Zhou Bin who ponder the issues surrounding the practise and nature of performance art. Their personal writings also look at the specific concerns of Chinese artists working in live art and scrutinise the need for the Vital festivals.

The individual artist responses are complimented by critical essays and reviews which contextualise the art practice within the wider cultural and political landscape. Reviews of the festivals come from live art writers Andrew Mitchelson and Rachel Lois Clapham. Artist and academic Lesley Sanderson and LA-based scholar Ming-Yuen Ma both look at the pertinent question of identity. Yang Zhi Chao's essay contextualises endurance performance work, Voon Pow Bartlett looks at the role of the audience while Yuen Yan examines the power and responsibility of the artists.

This mix of critical writing and personal artist responses is accompanied by stunning photography of the incredible performances of the festivals. The images capture moments from such performances as live art rebels JJ & Cai's unique take on the Monkey King legend, Marcus Young's very slow walk Pacific Avenue and He Chengyao's deeply moving hair auction performance at Vital 06.

Contributors include:

Lee Wen is an artist, political activist, festival curator and author whose work seeks to expose and question ideologies. He performed in Vital 07 and was a speaker at the Vital Bodies conference.

Zhou Bin is an artist living and working in Chengdu, China who has been working in live performance or action art since 1994. His processes often involve the using the limits of his body.

Rachel Lois Clapham was the Writing from Live Art writer who critiqued the Vital 07 performances and Vital Bodies conference.

Ming-Yuen S. Ma is a LA-based media artist, curator and theorist. For Vital, Ma presents two open letters to live artists Ma Liuming and He Chengyao.

Softcover, 205 x 205mm, 148pp
GBP 18.95
IBSN 978-0-9545440-6-5

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