- Migratory Signifiers, Encrypted Symbols: How Globalization Mobilizes Aesthetics
- Chinese Semiotic Studies
- Volume | Issue number
- 11 | 3
- Number of pages
- Document type
- Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA)
In this paper I apply the concept of migratory aesthetics to practices of performance and installation art. I begin with two examples of artists-migrants, the Nigerian-British artist Yinka Shonibare and the Vietnamese-American artist Dinkh Q. Lê, and continue with Chinese artists who took the Great Wall of China as the locus but also the main motif of their performances and installations. I selected the work of Concept 21, the Yuanmingyuan group, and Xu Bing. I stress the importance of these art forms in relation to migratory aesthetics. I argue that it is the combination of signifiers inspired by Western art and Chinese iconographies - with sometimes intentionally encrypted symbols - that gives us a better understanding of the mobility and hybridity of aesthetics in times of globalization, which is therefore not restricted to artistic practices of migrants.
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