søndag den 1. april 2018

Trojan Horses in the Chinese Countryside: Ou Ning and the Bishan Commune in Dialogue and Practice

This article is concerned with the Bishan Commune Project; a long-term socially engaged art project initiated in the southern part of Anhui province—it is concerned with the artists and intellectuals who were involved, the villagers they met and the local authorities they negotiated with. 

In her 1984 essay “Trojan Horses: Activist Art and Power” feminist activist and writer Lucy Lippard famously ponders whether “the Trojan Horse was the first activist art work.”[1] By this Lippard presented us with manifold representations of power and an exploration of how these can (perhaps) work from the inside and out, from the outside and in. My inquiry here is, however, not the Trojan Horse of Ancient Greece nor the Trojan Horses of a North American tradition of activist art, but rather, how Lippard’s Trojan Horse can be read in the context of socially engaged art projects in rural China. 

Read the article online in FIELD - A Journal of Socially Engaged Art Criticism.