Guest Lecture: A History Written By our Bodies: Artistic Activism and the Agonistic Chinese Voice of Mad For Real’s Performances at the End of the Twentieth Century

Jump on Tracy Emin's Bed, Cai Yuan蔡元

Speaker: Katie Hill (Sotheby’s Institute of Art London)

When: 4:30 pm, Monday, April 29, 2019

Venue: Harvard University, HAA Classroom 422, Arthur M. Sackler Building


Dr. Katie Hill’s talk discussed the work of Mad For Real, a performance duo (Cai Yuan and Jianjun Xi) who work between Britain and China and became known for pioneering interventional performance in the public space using the city of London as a cultural canvas. Her talk explores the duo’s artistic activism at the end of the twentieth century in the context of transcultural practice and how the artists’ bodies and voices act to assert a certain kind of Chinese presence onto a political and cultural landscape at a particular moment in time within the broader framework of neocolonialism.  This talk is drawn from her recently published chapter in Yeh and Thorpe (eds.) Contesting British Chinese Culture (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018).

About the Speaker:
Katie Hill is Program Director of the MA in Modern and Contemporary Asian Art at Sotheby’s Institute of Art London and an established professional in the field of contemporary Chinese art. She gained an MA from the University of Edinburgh in Chinese Language and Literature and went on to pursue a PhD with Craig Clunas at the University of Sussex, exploring the diasporic presence of Chinese artists in Europe interrogating representation and transnational practice within a global context during the 1990s. She is currently working on Lifelines, a solo exhibition of ink painter Wang Huangsheng at Hong Kong Arts Centre with Gallery 3812.  


See the original event page here.