No Masters in the Contemporary: Decentralized Collective Creation

April 21, 2021

“Contemporary has come to designate something more than simply the art of the present moment. In my view, moreover, it designates less a period than what happens after there are no more periods in some master narrative of art, and less a style of making art than a style of using styles.” –Arthur Danto, After the End of Art

In this lecture, Jiaxing He, designer of Timonium Lake, and Jianhong Huang, director of Kuandu Museum of Fine Arts, discuss how creators should orient themselves and how to participate in a “current” collective creative action in a contemporary situation that has lost ideological indicators.

The master–The style and thought of the modernist period were forerunners, then entered the contemporary era. The concept of the existence of indicators in specific fields gradually became blurred. The perspective, from point to network, from focus to divergence, also symbolizes the multi-directionality of people's cognition of moral right and wrong: What is good or bad, what is definition–what is “contemporary”? become the most pressing question.

In the lecture, Jiaxing He takes the modeling work he has been doing for many years as an example, and shares how graphic designers can respond to the flow of culture; Jianhong Huang takes the French philosophical system as a framework to sort out the changes of art through history due to international politics, economy and reimagined through social change.

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