Avant-garde' Art Groups in China 1979-1989 gives a critical polylogic (multi-voiced) account of four of the most significant Chinese avant-garde art groups of the late 1970s and 1980s: The Stars, The Northern Art Group, The Pond Association and Xiamen Dada. The book includes extended conversations with members of those groups that provide detailed insights into the shifting, culturally complex and regionally diverse conditions of artistic production in mainland China during the decade leading up to the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989. The conversations are supported by an introduction situating Chinese avant-garde art groups of the 1970s and 1980s as part of the wider development of post-revolutionary Chinese modern and contemporary art as well as comprehensive notes addressing questions of historical fact and localised socio-cultural meaning. This rigorously researched and highly accessible book is essential reading for anyone interested in China's cultural, social and political development after the death of Mao Zedong.
Award-winning critical theorist and cultural historian Paul Gladston is the inaugural Judith Neilson Chair Professor of Contemporary Art at the University of New South Wales, Sydney and a distinguished affiliate fellow of the UK-China Humanities Alliance, Tsinghua University, Beijing. He is an inaugural co-editor of the book series Contemporary East Asian Visual Cultures, Societies and Politics and was founding principal editor of the Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art.