A New Voice for the Third Space: Xu Bing and the Redefined Chinese American Art

By: Joy Chang '14

Advising Faculty: Yibing Huang

In the present day globalizing art market, how does one define Chinese American art? When an artwork is made in the United States, composed of Western art styles, and made by those who reside within American borders and consider themselves Americans, can it still be confined to a label as general as "Chinese Art," or "Asian Art," just based solely on the ethnic identity of the artists? What is the definition of American art when an essential part of its society and culture is the embrace and emphasis of its people’s multiculturalism and diversity? Does a Chinese American artist need to incorporate elements that are most popularly associated with his or her “other” culture in order to be considered noteworthy of being an artist of Chinese background; in other words, do they need to deliberately abandon all signs of their cultural heritage in order to avoid being lumped in a general, confining category that is based purely on their ethnicity?

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Related Fields: East Asian Studies