The Asian Traffic exhibition and conference has just opened at the Asia-Australia Arts Centre in Sydney, a four-month show exploring contemporary asian art from across asia. Artists from as far west as India, north from China, and all through the south-east including Malaysia and Thailand, along with Asian-Australian artists will be taking part in panel discussions, keynote sessions, and performances.
The Asian Traffic conference brings together artists, art historians, curators, cultural theorists and critics from Paris, China, Philippines and Australia to explore the movement of Asian art and artists throughout the world.
Its principal aim is to advance critical analysis of the effects of ‘Asian diaspora’, and of the phenomenon of ‘global itinerancy’ in relation to art production and exhibition practice.
Much of the contemporary theoretical writing on diasporic identity has evolved from studies in pan-African culture, or else from research on European-based immigrant communities from the sub-contintent. It remains very much an open question whether the insights of scholars such as Gilroy, Young, Spivak and Bhabha have useful application beyond the field from which they were developed. In any case, it is not difficult to argue that the various Asian diasporas have been seriously under-theorised and under-represented in cultural theory. At the same time it is equally clear that the issues of global diaspora, itinerancy and ‘cosmopolitics’ are central to the practice of so many contemporary artists with an Asian background.
Artists include Arahmaiani, David CLARKE (蟡之銵), Shilpa GUPTA, Katherine HUANG, Mella JAARSMA, Jie JIANG (憪), Jaehoon LEE, Owen LEONG, Meeping LEUNG (璇), Yu PENG (敶剔此b.1974), Bundith PHUNSOMBATLERT, Koky SALY, Michael SHAOWANASAI, Shaomin SHEN (瘝), Vasan SITTHIKET, Renee SO, Kijeong SONG, Dong SONG (摰), Manit SRIWANICHPOOM, Yuan SUN (摮怠), Hoychong WONG, Keith WONG (暺暻), Fudong YANG (璆)