East meets west in a summer of Asian art

East meets west in a summer of Asian art

The visual arts program for this year’s Chinese New Year celebrations is Sydney’s biggest ever, with a spectacular line-up of free events from 8-24 February.

The festival features thought-provoking works from renowned local artists like Lindy Lee and Garry Trinh, through to Chinese stars like Guan Wei and Song Dong.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the Lunar New Year celebrations were a great opportunity to learn about and celebrate the rich art, culture and heritage of China, Vietnam and Korea.

“The big cultural shifts throughout Asia are being reflected in challenging and inspiring artwork from across the region,” the Lord Mayor said.

“This year’s Lunar New Year celebrations feature photography, painting, ceramics and fashion retrospectives from important Chinese, Vietnamese and Korean artists. We’re proud to present these exhibitions free for everyone.”

Chinese New Year highlights for art lovers include:

Snake Snake Snake: an exhibition of contemporary Asian Australian artists
5-23 February at Lower Town Hall, Sydney Town Hall – free

Celebrating the depth and range of relationships and artistic exchange between Australia and China, Vietnam and Korea, this extraordinary exhibition features emerging and established artists – those newly arrived in Australia and those with shared Aboriginal and Asian heritage. The eclectic works explore themes of heritage, individual journeys, cultural issues and the concept of home, while uncovering notions of personal space, identity and globalisation with wonder and wisdom. sydneychinesenewyear.com

Song Dong: Dad and Mum, Don’t Worry About Us, We Are All Well
5 January-30 March at 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art – free

Going hand-in-hand with Waste Not, this is a survey exhibition of works by contemporary Chinese artist Song Dong from the past three decades, presenting compelling portraits of parent and child relationships and the power of simple actions in the process of remembering and memorialising. 4a.com.au

Song Dong: Waste Not
5 January-17 March at Carriageworks – free

This transformative installation by one of China’s pre-eminent artists, Song Dong, reflects a journey of hardship, loss, resilience and celebration. From the family home in Beijing to the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the installation includes the entire contents of the artist’s mother’s house. carriageworks.com.au

Vivian Chan Shaw – 40 Years, a Retrospective
6-13 February at Whitehouse Institute of Design – free

Delight in this retrospective of work from Sydney icon and celebrated fashion label Vivian Chan Shaw. From 1970s fabrics to today’s hand-loomed knitwear, Vivian Chan Shaw’s designs have gained a global reputation. chineseheritage.org.au or vivianchanshaw.com

Wontons & Meat Pies
2-27 February at Robin Gibson Gallery – free

Exploring themes of heritage, tradition, cultural identity and home, this joint exhibition features works from cutting-edge ceramicist Karen Choy, printmaker Jason Phu and photographer Evelyn Wai. robingibson.net

6-24 February at Inner City Clayworkers Gallery – free

Using porcelain, stoneware and earthenware, this showcase of new ceramic works from Chinese and Australian artists and gallery co-op members celebrates the Year of the Snake. clayworkers.com.au

Dragon 2000 to Dragon 2012
4-28 February at Surry Hills, Haymarket, Green Square and Kings Cross libraries – free

Returning by popular demand, this photographic retrospective of the City’s Chinese New Year Parade captures all the magic of the past 12 years of festivities, from the thrill of a child in the audience, to the concentration of a performer in the spotlight. Don’t miss this chance to relive your favourite moments from Dragon to Dragon! cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/library

Diversity of Tradition
5-24 February at Craft NSW – free

Using diverse firing techniques and forms, potters from the Society of Arts and Crafts NSW, along with invited ceramicists, celebrate Chinese New Year with a unique exhibition that echoes Chinese aesthetics. artsandcraftnsw.com.au

For more information, please contact:

City of Sydney Senior Media Adviser Keeley Irvin.
Phone 0448 005 718 or email kirvin@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au

For interviews with Lord Mayor Clover Moore, contact Matt Levinson.
Phone 0427 044 768 or email mlevinson@cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au