Anne Zwiener

China is experiencing simultaneously, a revival of ancient culture and craft and at the same time, a rapid change into a future where modern industry, architecture, technology and western influence dominate. This creates a peculiar ambivalence in a city like Beijing, where the elements of this juxtaposition co-exist awkwardly. Villages, mainly at the outskirts of Beijing, survive containing life on a small scale. Humans still coexist with farm animals, carts, little shops and markets, without the convenience of proper plumbing, water supplies, sewerage or heating. Nearby can be found the revival of artistic communities, which require cheap space and low cost living conditions. These villages and artist communities tumble before the ongoing advance of modern development. Where does this development lead? How will it effect the environment? What long-term effect will this fast-paced modernization have on the soul of the Chinese people? My work draws attention to these contradictions. My impressions and interpretations of today’s Beijing inform my artworks and give them my personal mythology. These are the impressions of a visitor, collecting fragmented images and projecting them from my own perspective.

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