The Ontario College of Art & Design (OCAD), as part of its President’s Lecture Series, is pleased to present a talk by Chinese artist and curator Lu Jie on The Long March Project, on Wednesday, February 14, 2007, at 6:30 pm. President Sara Diamond regularly presents internationally-renowned experts to discuss key issues in contemporary art and design practice and research, with the aim to engage the community in discussion, debate and collegiality.
Lu Jie is a curator, and the founder and director of The Long March Project. Initiated in 1999, the original curatorial project took place along the historical route of Mao Zedong and the Red Army’s Long March (1934-35). The Project uses the historical event as a discursive framework for reexamining and reengaging in China’s cultural and artistic past through the curation of exhibitions, performances, symposia and the creation of new work in public sites with historical, political or cultural significance.
“Today, China is on a new Long March road to development, bringing about rapid changes in both geographical and social landscapes, as well as artistic expression of our contemporary,” said Jie. “Our new Long March looks for a new approach to contemporary art – using China as a platform. The Long March is a movement through space, time or thought without a fixed beginning or end, stressing adaptation to local and temporal circumstances, and overcoming seemingly insurmountable setbacks.”
The Long March Project has evolved into an ongoing initiative, marching along three parallel and interrelated journeys – local, international, and in the Long March Space, based in Beijing. The Space serves as the leading platform for linking local and international. Over 300 artists, theorists, and art activists from China and abroad collaborate to organize international exhibitions, community-based educational programs and artist residencies where ideas about art, history and cultural production can be discussed from local, national and international perspectives.
“Lu Jie is at the front line of cultural change in China, where contemporary art is garnering a tremendous increase in national and international attention,” said OCAD President, Sara Diamond. “The Project is significant for its scale of collaboration and its bravery in addressing a complex period of China’s past, a country that is now exploring new levels of freedom of expression.”
The Long March Project has been showcased at the at the National Museum of Contemporary Art, Oslo, Museum of Contemporary Art, Lyon, 2004 Shanghai Biennale, 2004 Taipei Biennale and will be exhibited in 2005 Yokohama International Triennale of Contemporary Art, the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Asia Pacific Triennale, in Brisbane, Australia. The Long March Space recently launched 800 Meters Under, a project by leading artist Yang Shaobin in China’s coal mining region engaging with socialist memory and the ruins of industrial society. In May 2006, the Long March - Yan’an Project featured work by leading Chinese and international artists including Cai Guo-Qiang.
Lu Jie, born in Fujian China, holds a BFA from the China Academy of Arts in Hangzhou and an MA from the Creative Curating Program in Goldsmiths College, University of London. He has curated numerous contemporary art exhibitions internationally including the Chinese presentation at the 2005 Prague Biennale and the 2005 Yokohama Triennale. He is the founder of the Long March Foundation in New York, and the 25000 Cultural Transmission Center in Beijing. Organizer of the first international curatorial symposium Curating in Chinese Context in Zunyi, China (2002), Lu Jie has contributed to art conferences and seminars in China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, Australia, and throughout Europe and North America. He is Guest Researcher at the Research Center of Display Culture, China Academy of Art, Hangzhou, China, and is on the Editorial Board of Yishu – Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art.
Historical Backgrounder: the Long March
From 1934 to 1935, in retreat from the Nationalist Kuomintang armies, Mao Zedong led the 100,000 strong Red Armies of the Chinese Communist Party in a 9,700 km journey across remote, road less terrain, first west and then north from Jiangxi Province to Shaanxi. This trek became known as the Long March. Approximately 90,000 people died before they reached their isolated destination. Despite the tremendous loss of life, the Long March allowed the Communist Party to rebuild support in the north of China, primarily through cooperation and dependence between local peasants and Long March survivors.
OCAD President’s Lecture Series:
Lu Jie, Founder of the Long March Project
Wednesday, February 14, 2007, 6:30 pm
Ontario College of Art & Design
Auditorium, 100 McCaul Street, Toronto
All are welcome; admission is free.
416-977-6000 | www.ocad.ca
Official Website: http://www.ocad.ca
Added by smulholland on February 1, 2007