Above Sea: Contemporary Art, Urban Culture, and the Fashioning of Global Shanghai

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Manchester University Press, 2019 - Art - 177 pages
Shanghai, long known as mainland China's most cosmopolitan city, is today a global cultural capital. This book offers the first in-depth examination of contemporary Shanghai-based art and design - from state-sponsored exhibitions to fashionable cultural complexes to cutting edge films and installations. Informed by years of in-situ research, the book looks beyond contemporary art's global hype to reveal the socio-political tensions accompanying Shanghai's transitions from semi-colonial capitalism to Maoist socialism to Communist Party-sponsored capitalism. Case studies reveal how Shanghai's global aesthetic constructs glamorising artifices that mask the conflicts between vying notions of foreign-influenced modernity and anti-colonialist nationalism, as well as the city's repressed socialist past and its consumerist present.

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About the author (2019)


Jenny Lin is Assistant Professor of Contemporary Art with Asian Focus at the University of Oregon

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