Two solo exhibitions that are now being held in Taiwan, featuring the paintings and video installation art of Chinese artists Yang Na (楊納) and Mu Lei (穆磊), give visitors an insight into how China’s younger generation sees itself, the Museum of Contemporary Art said yesterday.
Yang and Mu, both under the age of 30, are known for their distinct styles in contemporary Chinese art, museum director Shih Jui-jen (石瑞仁) said in Taipei yesterday.
Yang’s paintings often portray a character called “Nana,” who has a pair of big, enchanting eyes, the nose of a dog, full lips and perfect make-up, Shih said.
“Nana” is the embodiment of an aesthetic prevalent among the younger generation throughout Asia, Yang said.
In Asia, including China, girls, women and even young men are constantly trying to make their eyes look bigger and their face prettier, which is monotonous and contrary to natural beauty, she said.
Yang said she painted a dog’s nose on Nana because many young girls, particularly in China, can “acutely smell” how to get what they want by acting cute and using their looks.
She said for people in China who were born in the 1980s and 1990s and grew up during the country’s rapid economic expansion, life is relatively comfortable. As an artist, Yang said, she would like to portray the characteristics of the people of her time.
Mu, on the other hand, said that as a contemporary artist, innovation always comes first. While painting is a good way to express one’s thoughts and show one’s techniques, he said, he has now extended his creativity to video installation and animation.
The two solo exhibitions will be held at the museum until Jan. 23.