We are pleased to present Neo Hua Ren exhibition, independently organized by T, D and S supported by V/COLLECTIVE creative agency. It showcases works by London-based young artists from Mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. The show is a platform to promote undiscovered perspectives on the diaspora and its influence in the globalized world.
Hua Ren (华人) is a wide term representing overseas residents of Chinese descent, including those from Mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. The Chinese diaspora in the United Kingdom is fragmented and reflects a complicated history of drastic transformations experienced by the Asian world in the past century. Today, a younger generation, which has inherited the complexity of its origins, infuses it with a different approach formed according to the new reality: in the post-internet world, where everyone is undeliberately connected, the concept of a separated, ethnicity-based community is questioned as a matter of living. The exhibition celebrates the openness and diversity of the participating artists. It poses questions: What does ethnic identity mean in the globalized world? Do the young diaspora still face adversity arising from the concept of ‘otherness’ and/or ‘Chineseness’? How has the internet and the ease of technology brought about unexpected social complications? The show aims to unfold a wider, more complex view on the contemporary living of the Hua Ren.
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Tina Maslakova, Director and Curator
Growing up in Moscow, Tina has been inextricably drawn into the cultural interconnection between East and West and exposed to how visual and material culture influences the perception of one another. Her interest was accelerated by studying a BA in Oriental Studies in Russia, further deepened after various working experiences in visual arts in Shanghai, and receiving an MA in Modern and Contemporary Asian Art and working at Gazelli Art House in London.
In Shanghai, Tina has taken on key responsibilities in Leo Xu Projects, AIKE gallery and The Long Museum. She was heavily involved with “James Turrell: Immersive Light”, a large-scale retrospective of the artist in China, “A New Ballardian Vision” - exhibition organized by Leo Xu Projects in Metro Pictures gallery in New York; “aaajiao: User, Love, High-Frequency Trading”, “Su Chang: Breath”, “Tang Dixin”, “Spiral Stairs”, “Fang Wei: Morningside”, “Wander-circle” and other gallery exhibitions.
She has represented AIKE gallery at Art Basel Hong Kong, Asia Now in Paris and West Bund Art and Design Fair in Shanghai; participated in Frieze New York and LISTE Art Fair Basel with Leo Xu Projects.
Her involvement with classical Chinese art includes “Dilligence and Intelligence — Song and Yuan Dyansties Calligraphy and Paintings from Private Collections.”
More recently, she has been engaged with London art scene through MA in Modern and Contemporary Asian Art at Sotheby’s institute of Art and working at Gazelli Art House. She hopes to utilize her skills to promote contemporary artists of all backgrounds and is excited to direct and curate Neo Hua Ren Exhibition, 2019 in London.
Stephanie Chen, Marketing and Sponsorships Manager
Stephanie was born in Taipei, Taiwan in 1992 and spent the first eight years of her life there. She attended a local school in Neihu, picked fresh Taiwanese sugar apples — and acquired a million mosquito bites — in the Hua Lien countryside, and camped on the then-snowy Yang Ming Mountain with the nineteen kids in her close-knit neighborhood community.
In 2001, her and her family uprooted to Orange County, California. Within two weeks of her arrival, she was teased for her “fobby” name Yan-Ling, was embarrassingly thrown into time-out during recess for confusing the phrase “on purpose” with “unpurpose” — a made-up word which she believed to be a synonym of unintentionally — and was forced by her tiger mom to memorize twenty new English vocabulary words a day. Growing up as part of two cultures — American and Taiwanese — in a somewhat ethnically diverse Orange County, she found herself often questioning what it meant to be “Taiwanese-American.” At times, she felt stuck in a weird limbo, “too culturally American” for her friends in Taiwan, and “too culturally Taiwanese” for her friends in America.
Fortunately for her, the increasingly globalized world has brought into her life a sense of community with people who have experienced multiple cultures. Amongst many other beautiful moments, she found a sense of belonging sharing Sichuan food with the Russian girl who studied Chinese and lived in Shanghai; making hot pot for the ethnically Vietnamese girl who grew up in Switzerland and lived in Hong Kong; and sharing a flat with a Korean girl who lived in Texas. Having spoken to other international students, travelers, and overseas Chinese, she has found community, a sense of belonging, and many shared experiences.
After graduating from the University of California, Berkeley in 2015, Stephanie has promoted tech companies, real estate firms, insurance agencies, and art galleries. She has worked with galleries in Los Angeles, California and in Portland, Oregon, to advocate artists such as Harmonia Rosales, Yalda Sepahpour, and Laddie John Dill. More recently, she has completed art and design projects for corporate clients such as Wells Fargo, Farmers Insurance, Pepperdine University, the Irvine Company, Hoag Hospital, and individual clients such as Anastasia Soare, Brandon Williams, and Kevin Hart.
Because of her background as an ethnically Chinese millennial immigrant, recent MA in Modern and Contemporary Asian Art, and passion for promoting artists and businesses, she is more than thrilled to contribute her skills to the Neo Hua Ren Exhibition team. For any press or business inquiries for Stephanie, please feel free to reach her directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Photographer: Dani Shi
Djenai Delerue, Production and Curating Manager
Djenai was born and Vietnam and brought up in Switzerland for most of her childhood. Her interest for the arts started quite early and is what led her to London to study History of Art at Goldsmiths' University. Going to Hong Kong for an internship and having ties with Southeast Asia is what drawn her to completing a Master's at Sotheby’s in Modern and Contemporary Asian Art. This is when her interest for China fostered.
Wanting to participate in the citation of this show was born from the different interactions with her fellow classmate who share the same interest. Furthermore, having a Vietnamese heritage but a Western background has incited her to work on a project that deals with the theme of diaspora.