On London's final day in Beijing, she met with Li Xianting, the man who conceived and promoted the China Pop movement of the early 90's. What did he have in mind as an encore?

Li Xianting Li Xianting

Interview by Feng Mengbo [17:49 min RealAudio]

Li proposed a meeting at a Sichuan restaurant. "Cantonese food," he noted, "everyone cooks. But the owners of Sichuan restaurants really are from Sichuan province."

Food Two kinds of mushrooms, one looks like sliced chicken

Bitter melon with preserved vegetable

Eel with bamboo shoots and celery


The aftermath - London and Li satisfied by the spicy Sichuan flavors Barbara London and Li Xianting


Li explains his concept of "Gaudy Art," helped by translators Chen Yang and Andrea Cavazzuti.

For interneters not fluent in both English and Chinese, an example of "Gaudy Art," in porcelain by Xu Yihui, will help clarify Li Xianting's idea.

As London prepares to leave Beijing, she realizes that many accomplished artists have not been included in the stir-fry. She thanks them for inviting her to their studio, and wishes she had more time to devote to their work. Still, before the plane taxis down the runway, she sends off a few final Beijing dispatches.


Lin Tianmiao

A Gush of Thread Winding, an installation

A lava flow of tightly wound balls of thread stream from thousands of pins assembled in the shape of a crater. A video of working hands, seen filtered through a pillowcase, documents the repetitive task of winding the thread. The heavily allusive work suggests the shape of a body, with lava emanating from the pubic area.


Yin Xiuzhen

Untitled community installation

Yin Xiuzhen gathered old clothes donated by people living in the outskirts of Beijing. She washed the clothes and hung them to dry in a discarded pagoda. The wet clothes dripped on mounds of plaster of Paris which absorbed the water to form cement. The community supported the artist's recycling statement.


Song Dong

From a photograph of Tablet House installation

Song Dong is away from Beijing, traveling in Germany. London will catch up with him in New York at the Guggenheim exhibition, "Five Thousand Years of Chinese Art." London won't comment of the first 4999 years of Chinese art, but Song's installation representing the 5000th year looks promising. Come to the exhibition, opening February 1998.

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