Opened on July 23, The preview exhibition for the 2011 Chengdu Biennale, "Reconstructed Realities," showcases over 300 paintings from 80 artists in one of the 10,000 sqm halls at the New Exhibition Center.
Centering on realism, approximately half the paintings are those of established contemporary Chinese painters, while the other half constitutes the Biennale's traditional "emerging artists" section.
While the quality and range of works on display has seen a marked improvement over those of past years, perhaps more importantly is that 2011 seems to mark a turning point for art in Chengdu; for the first time, members of the public are being actively encouraged to enrich their lives with art.
This year is the first time in the Chengdu Biennale's 10-year history that one of its exhibitions has been opened to the public free of charge. In contrast to previous years' Biennales (this is the fifth; on-site displays provide an overview of the previous four), when most of the exhibit visitors were players in the art community or art students, this year we spotted lots of ordinary looking members of the public visiting the exhibit, looking at the art, taking snapshots of and with the paintings, and bringing their kids to see the paintings. With the not-yet-year-old Metro Line 1's southmost stop exiting straight into the Exhibition Center, transportation to the venue is now quick, inexpensive, and convenient.
"Reconstructed Realities" runs through August 21 at No. 2 Hall of the Century City New Exhibition Center.
The Chengdu Biennale main exhibitions will be held from September 30 to November 30, 2011 at the Chengdu East Music Park and Chengdu Industrial Civilization Museum encompass contemporary Chinese art, international design, and international architecture.
They include "Pure Views: Contemporary Art Exhibition"; "The Solutions: International Design Exhibition" including product, furniture, fashion, visual, new media, and architectural design; and "Holistic Realm: International Architecture Exhibition," including city design.