第64期 上海2010(2010)

第64期 上海2010(2010年)

学术主持:比利安娜

主题:高铭研 胡昀 廖斐 卢佳炜 陆平原 苏畅 唐狄鑫 张乐华

新作:刘野 汪凌 双飞 靳卫红 吕俊杰

Issue No. 64(2010)

Theme: Shanghai 2010 Beginnings

Academic Host: Biljana Ciric

A.T:Gao Mingyan, HuYun, Liao Fei, Lu Jiawei, Lu Pingyuan, Su Chang, Tang Dixin, Zhang Lehua

A.N: Liu Ye, Wang Ling, Shuang Fei, Jin Weihong, Lv Junjie

64

主题:上海2010

学术主持:比利安娜·思瑞克

关于“i”一代

《美术文献》杂志及付晓东邀请我作本期杂志的艺术家介绍,最后还是选择介绍生活、工作在上海的这一批年轻艺术家。

最近在看《比耶稣还年轻》这本书(该书是纽约新美术馆同名展览的相关出版物),其中包含了对全世界那些比耶稣还年轻的一代人的分析和考察。文章来自各种媒体,从《纽约时报》到非洲的主流报刊,从不同角度分析年轻人,或所谓80年代这一群体的各种需求。这些文章的共同目标是怎么以更快的速度让这一代成为他们的消费群体。 其中一篇文章谈到中国的这一代人,作者把他们叫做 “酷的一代”。

“酷”,90年代出现的这个词主要是表达对一个东西的认可,追求与众不同的、讲究个体的独立性。其实“酷”很少会挂在如今这个群体的嘴上,更加为他们所认可的词可能是“牛B” 或“爽”。还是和“酷”有不一样的。更有趣的定义是 “i”一代,字母“I” 在这是用小写的形式,就像“I” 在 “iPhone” 和“iPod” 前面的那个“i”,“i”在这代表自己,但是这个“自己”是马上可以分享给大家的、是给予群众的,但又是离“舍己利人”有一定的距离的。 这种“i” 其实是个表演形式的开始,个体和群体早已变得十分模糊。

“酷”应该是他们的追求,不管他们现在自己酷不酷。所以到底是属于“酷”的一代,还是“i” 一代?似乎有点说不太清。也许 “i” 一代的定义和身份、生产交流的途径应该是更贴近他们的日常。

我其实很忌讳去讨论“一代一代”的区别和共性,因为很多文章已经给80年代出生的艺术家做出了很多莫名其妙的“定义”和误读。但是事实他们确实是80年代后出生的艺术家,所以有一点我同意,无论你是否愿意接受,这个群体还是属于一代人。Mannheim 说“一代”就像“阶层”。属于一代或一个阶层未必需要一种属于他们的意识,但是你的价值判断、可能性、局限性就是这代人、这个阶层的共同点。所以,不管认可或不认可,还是属于一代,也就还是有他或她的一些特点。

我应该毫无疑问不属于他们这一代,但是可以说我经常与他们擦肩而过。他们大部分参加过我的展览,应该说有些也已经­很熟悉了。我经常问他们的问题是“想干什么?”、“5年后自己是什么样?”只是到现在还没有一个比较准确的回答,经常得到的答复是清楚自己不想要什么。

我想这可能才是吸引我的地方。他们的不确定性的背后是更多的可能性。

其实当时选艺术家没有考虑年代或“一代人”这些因素,只是想哪一些年轻人做的事能让我们看到一点不一样的东西,或许更多地是对他们有些许期待,所以挑选了这8位艺术家。

有一点很重要的是,他们在刚开始做艺术的时候,很多东西已经很不一样了。他们周围没有评论家去探讨艺术的理论以及艺术能给社会带来什么等诸如此类的问题;他们周围也没有人会去说服他们这样的对话在艺术圈是很有价值的。评论家和艺术家之间可能10年前就已经­切断了密切的关系。所以读者可以注意到大部分年轻人的推介词是由艺术家写的。

同时,艺术和金钱的关系是这些人眼前的鲜明例证。艺术市场的狂欢让他们的周围充斥着很多市场的诱惑、画廊合作的可能性。但是在上海,还是只有一个画廊。

也许上一代太相信艺术的高尚,而这些人身上却少有这个对艺术的期待,反而艺术在他们的生活中是处在一个还不确定的位置。他们选了艺术这条路应该是有个特殊的关系,或许与上一代有关,但是什么我们还不得而知。

 

集体力量

 

他们在上海应该是一个小集体,他们围绕一些想法会一起工作,互相之间有分工,但是还是保留个体的创作空间。 他们不前卫。前卫其实往往会暗示着对长辈的价值判断和体系所带有的一种很强的杀气,但其实他们对长辈是很认可的,只是他们会想尽办法去保持距离,为了避免走同样的路。 有时成功有时失败,但是他们很清楚其中的危险。

这个年轻群体进入艺术的时间不长,但是所处的时代和拥有的条件跟他们的长辈很不一样,尤其是在上海。

他们去年在上海做的很多的集体活动都是想寻找一些新的表达方式(他们称为“新玩法”)和生存策略。

如果有人来上海,很少可以在画­廊看到本土年轻艺术家的作品,这几乎是不可能的。不太了解的人也就会觉得这里根本没有年轻人在做东西。

这些年轻人似乎已经有了自己的策略与选择。

去年4月份上海年轻艺术家在杨浦区找了一栋旧楼,组织了一场“跳楼”活动。组织者高铭研和卢佳炜请了身边一批熟悉的或不太熟悉的艺术家,有做音乐的、做戏剧的,还包括杭州的年轻艺术家,大家过来一起跳。没有任何限制,只有一个要求:从特定的高度往下跳。那天估计不管是去看的还是参与的都跳了。其实对于这个活动,他们从来没当做“艺术活动”去做,只是个集体的活动。也没有邀请观众、没有做宣传。

其实艺术史上很多人提出这样的行动。Klein的著名照片从窗户上跳出去,小野洋子的 “飞”行为,她邀请朋友从舞台上用各种方式飞等等。可以说并不是很新鲜的行动,但是有意思的是这些“不艺术”的行动,有时候让人疑惑他们不知道在干嘛,恰恰可以给这个艺术环境带一些新的思考,一些新的可能性。

另一个发生在去年的例子是唐狄鑫的“地摊艺术”——一个由年轻艺术家发起的项目。这些年轻艺术家其实都是没有画廊代理,大部分没有工作,也很少有途径能卖掉自己的作品,很少有画­廊了解他们的工作状态和诉求。唐狄鑫做了“地摊画廊”,请艺术家提供可以放在地摊上的作品,完全就像画廊的运营模式,卖掉的钱他与艺术家五五分成。这样一个艺术家的行动带着些许乌托邦式的对艺术市场、圈子、经济的态度,有点不服气,但同时也希望别人可以注意到和了解到他们在做些什么。虽然“地摊艺术”是艺术家独立操作的经营系统,但其实对他们来讲更多的是一个传达的方式。听起来这个仅仅是个美好的愿望,也可以说是个本能的行动,但是这会带动很多背后的思考:到底为什么做、怎么去理解这些行为等等。

青年艺术家的“折扣店”也是一个年轻艺术家的集体生存策略。在没有画­廊的前提下,艺术家做了移动的折扣店这个概念,用其他空间和画廊资源来展示自己平时所做的东西。

集体的力量让大部分这些活动变成了实现。也许对大部分人来说跟没有发生过是一样的,但是对这个艺术家群体来说显得很重要。这样一种对群体的推动方式和精神毕竟是短暂性的,但如果集体的力量被消磨掉了,现在去孤立地分析他们单独个体会选哪条道路还太早了。

 

个体的艺术生命

 

我作为他们的观察者、策展人、合作伙伴、朋友,有时候还是他们想法的“过滤者”以及他们想法的支持者。有些乌托邦、有些不成熟,但是去做才是最重要的。做了才知道会发生什么。

他们的艺术来自于对单调生活和现实的调侃。他们的工作方式很难用很清楚的观念去概括,因为毕竟才刚刚开始。但是通过本次《美术文献》和部分作品的介绍,大概可以感觉到他们作为个体将来的趋向和作品的思考。他们的工作方式从一个个小的点子到集体的行动,再回到个体,各种创作状态都有,应该是说每个个体艺术家自身的气质也在慢慢开始形成。

探讨个体的艺术发展对这些艺术家当然还过于早,艺术毕竟是个职业,需要很多对个体发展的要求,而艺术又是个很不一样的“职业”。

这其中唯一没办法代替的是才气。我们其实很少在讨论艺术时提到一个艺术家的才气,但是随着时间的推移,所看的作品越多就越需要看到这一点。

才气让艺术家这份职业与普通职业区分开,因为如果是我们普通人都能做的事情,还要艺术家去做它干吗?

而才气是需要培养的,因为它太容易被生活所消磨掉,它需要长,需要用理性的知识结构去慢慢塑造。因为只有精心塑造了,它才能变成个体的宇宙,才能给这个世界带来新的体验。

一切才刚刚开始。

本人向八位推介人及你们所给予的大力支持表示感谢。

 

 

Shanghai 2010 Beginnings

 

By Biljana Ciric

About the “i” Generation:

 

Invited by The Fine Arts Literature and FU Xiaodong to edit and curate  this issue, I accepted the honor and finally landed my choice on the group of young artists living and working in Shanghai.

 

Recently I was reading Younger than Jesus (publication of the namesake exhibit of New Museum of Contemporary Art of New York), which comprised of analyses and examinations of this younger-than-Jesus generation all over the world. The sources of these articles varied from The New York Times to the mainstream African journals. Various demands of the young generation or the so-called 80’s generation were analyzed from different perspectives in those articles, the common goal of which was to find out how to accelerate this generation on their road of becoming consumers. Among them there was one article talking about this generation of Chinese youngsters, referred to as the “cool generation” by the author.

Cool, a word emerged in the 90s, embodies the recognition of certain things, the pursuit of what is out of the ordinary and the independence of individuality. In fact, hardly can you hear this word coming out of the mouths of this generation, who identifies more with words like “A-game” or “Ka-ching”. The even more interesting definition is the “i” generation with “I” in small letter, just as “I” in “iPhone” and “iPod”. “i” here stands for a sharable oneself, while still keeping some distance from altruism. The “i” here is actually the beginning of the form of performance, obscuring individuals and groups.

Regardless of being “cool” or not, they still chase after it. So whether they should be defined as the “cool” generation or the “i” generation is still debatable. Maybe the definition, identity and means of communication of the “i” generation should be brought closer to their daily lives.

 

Actually I more often than not refrain myself from the discussion on differences and common traits of generations, since a great many baffling “definitions” and misunderstandings have been conferred upon those artists born in the 80s. But the truth remains that they were indeed born in the 80s, therefore, I agree with the idea that this group belongs to a generation whether you accept it or not. Mannheim said that “a generation” is a bit like a “class”. Belonging to a generation or a class doesn’t necessarily mandate an awareness of their own, but you values, possibilities and limitations may well be the common traits of this generation or class. Hence being a part of a generation means you share some characteristics with him or her, whether you recognize it or not.

Without a question I do not belong to their generation, but I get to meet them quite a lot. And since most of them have already participated in my exhibitions, I could safely call some of them my acquaintances. I often ask them “What do you want to do?’ or “How would you imagine yourself in 5 years?” for which I haven’t obtained a definite reply yet, but rather the clear answer of what they don’t want.

I think maybe this is what attracts me. Hiding behind their uncertainty are more potentials.

The factors of a certain “generation” or decade did not come into my mind while I was choosing the artists. The choice of the 8 artists is based on their ability to present something different or maybe my expectations on them.

 

What’s important is that a lot of things had changed the time they took their first step in art. There is no critics around to discuss artistic theories and issues like what’s art’s impact on the society, nor anyone to persuade them that such conversations between them were quite valuable in the art circle. The tight bond between critics and artists was probably severed 10 years ago. The readers could note that most introductions of young artists were written by artists.

Meanwhile, the relationship between art and money intensified. The revelry of the art market bombarded them with countless temptations of the market and possibilities to work with galleries. Yet there is still only one gallery in Shanghai.

Perhaps the older generation put too much faith in the nobility of art while these people lacked such expectation for art. Instead the art is still placed at an indefinite position in their lives. The reason for their choosing the path of art is definitely based on some particular relationship, which may be connected to the older generation, the reason for which is not revealed to us yet.

 

The Collective Force

 

A small community in Shanghai, they collaborated on some ideas with division of duties while preserving individual creative space. They are not avant-garde, which often implies a murderous confrontation against the values, judgments and systems of the senior generation. Instead they quite approve of the elders while maintaining a distance in order to avoid the same path. Sometimes it works and sometimes not, but they are fully aware of the danger.

This young community was a new comer in the realm of art, but their era and what they possess are quite a departure from that of their seniors, especially in Shanghai.

They staged a great deal of group activities in Shanghai last year, trying to find some new ways of expression (which they called “the new mode of fun”) and strategies of existence.

Seldom can the native young artists’ works be exhibited in the galleries of Shanghai any more; it has almost become an impossibility, leaving the impression of an utter lack of artistic activities of youngsters here.

It seemed that these young men had already made their strategy and choice.

 

Last April the young artists of Shanghai found an old building in the District of Yangpu for their “Jump”, which was organized by GAO Mingyan and LU Jiawei, who invited a bunch of familiar and unfamiliar artists, including young artists from Hangzhou, to join the jump. There was no restriction except for one rule: jumping off from a specified height. Everyone jumped, the viewers as well as the participants. It was never treated as an “artistic activity” but rather a group activity, hence no invitation of viewers and no propaganda.

Actually such activity was done by a lot of people in the art history, for examples, the famous photo of Klein jumping off the window, the “FLY” of Yoko Ono by inviting friends to fly off the stage using all kinds of ways. It’s not an original idea, but it succeeded in attracting people through the “inartistic” action, which sometimes baffled people as to their intention while bring some new thoughts and possibilities to this artistic environment.

 

Another example from last year is TANG Dixin’s “Street Gallery” – a project initiated by young artists, who were not represented by galleries, most of whom were jobless and without channels to sell their works, and whose working conditions and demands were understood by few galleries. TANG’s “Street Gallery” operated exactly according to the regular mode of galleries but with works that are suitable for street vending, with profits divided 50-50 between him and the artists. This kind of action from an artist represented a utopian attitude towards the artistic market, circle and economy, a bit unconvinced yet hoping their actions to be noted and understood by others. An independent operation system, the “Street Gallery” is more of a way of expression to those artists. It sounds like a wish and an instinctive action, but also evokes a lot of thought: why did they do this and how to understand these actions, etc.

The “Young Artist Sale Store” was also a collective strategy of existence of young artists. Without support from the galleries, they created the concept of a mobile discount store to exhibit their works through other space and gallery resources.

The collective force turned most of these activities into reality. Perhaps it didn’t touch the lives of most people, but it was particularly significant to the artistic group. This kind of group-oriented boosting is only temporary, but once the collective force wears off, it’s still early to separately predict the road they will individually pick.

 

The Artistic Life and Individual Path

 

I’m more than the observer, curator, partner and friend of these artists, and occasionally serve as the “filter” and the supporter of their thoughts. Some of them are utopian while some can be immature, but what’s really important is the real action, only after which the consequence is revealed.

Their art originates from the ridicule of monotonous life and reality. It’s hard to assign a clear definition to their method of working, which has only just begun. But we could get a rough picture of their tendencies as individuals and the thinking of works through the introduction of some of their works by Fine Arts Literature. Their methods of working vary from scrambled ideas to group activity and back to individuals, while unique temperament of each individual artist develops along the process.

 

It’s too early to discuss the individual artistic development of those artists. After all art is a profession, which imposes a great deal of requirements on the individual development, and a quite different “profession” at that.

The only thing irreplaceable is the talent, which is hardly mentioned in our discussion of art, but deserves more attention with the accumulation of time and works viewed.

But the talent needs to be nurtured, for too easily it will be worn down by life and its growth requires the tender care of rational structure of knowledge. Only with delicate shaping can it be turned into an individual universe, which will bring new experience to this world.

 

Everything has just begun.

 

Special thanks to the 8 recommenders and the support they provided.

 

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