Don’t Miss Berkeley’s Landmark Chinese Art Exhibit!

by Randy Shaw on December 18, 2008

A landmark exhibition of socially conscious and aesthetically rewarding art is currently on display only through January 4 at Berkeley’s University Art Museum. The Mahjong: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection includes 141 works from 96 artists, from the 1970’s through today. Many of the works are a response to the dramatic economic and cultural changes in China during these years, as capitalistic values began overpowering cultural traditions. This show echoes the socially conscious German Expressionist art of Weimar Germany, and the works of Rauschenberg, Johns and the beat and counter-culture novelists responding to America’s mass technological and manufacturing boom of the 1950’s and 60’s. The art is not only thought provoking, but it is also fun and often exhilarating to look at. Don’t see the name “Mahjong” and think the exhibit is about a popular game with tiles. This is a once in a lifetime exhibit that should not be missed by anyone interested in socially aware art, or Chinese culture.

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