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Julianna Heller Final Thesis.pdf

Quest for the Future: Constructing Identity in China’s Contemporary Art Museums

Through the analysis of three Chinese museums’ architecture, design, and exhibitions, this thesis examines the recent China Museum Boom and how contemporary art museums undergird the Chinese state’s mission to construct a cosmopolitan identity. I analyze how contemporary art museums, such as the Shenzhen Museum of Contemporary Art and Urban Planning, establish a cultural identity for the city and the nation. I then navigate the tensions between the government’s focus on promoting regional identity through the museum and the international frameworks used by the museum, seen in the SUPER FUSION 2021 biennale at the Chengdu Museum of Contemporary Art. Finally, I explore the Meixihu International Culture and Arts Center in Changsha as the museum leverages the spectacle of deconstructivist architecture to create a new visual language of Chinese power and success. This research is a crucial undertaking for critically examining museological and institutional constructions of identity in China.

Type: Thesis
Student: Heller, Julianna
Date: 2023
Status: Live|Last updated:May 5, 2023 2:28 PM
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