Wang Guangyi (1957-) 王广义
scan, paper, colour; original source: oil on canvas, 100 x 150 cm
DACHS 2012 Continuous Revolution (Wang Guangyi Chinese Tourist Map), Heidelberg catalogue entry
北京 - 5 → 7 °C 中华人民共和国万岁 世界人民大团结万岁
Mao Zedong, Mao portrait, Tian’anmen Square, clouds, protests, red, Chinese avantgarde
Wang Guangyi: Chinese Touristmap - Beijing (Wang Guangyi: Zhongguo lüyou jihua - Beijing 王广义: 中国旅游计划—北京)
Wang Guangyi’s 中国旅游计划—北京 Chinese Touristmap-Beijing of 1989 (China Avantgarde 1995:158) is an interesting study of Beijing weather and Tian’anmen at a temperature between minus 5 and 7 degrees. Everything is well focussed in this painting, even the slogan boards congratulating the People’s Republic and the People’s Congress, yet Mao’s image is only a blotch of colour, and, as well known in images of Mao, there are other cloudlike (!) blotches with colour dripping out of them (like rain, predicted in the weather forecast) both in the sky and on the ground (these are red: suggesting blood dripping onto Tian’anmen in June 1989?). Why is Mao out of focus here as in so many recent depictions? What does this tell us about the reception of MaoArt? Is it such that one no longer wants to see him who is made responsible for what happened on Tian’anmen and earlier? Or is it in fact, quite the opposite, is it regretted that it is simply no longer possible to see him due to the new politics of “socialist capitalism” now reigning high?