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When Art Happened

In the 1990s, there were very few places to hold contemporary art exhibitions, concerts, or even simple gatherings of friends. Nonetheless, some of China’s most celebrated cultural figures—particularly in the fields of art and music—would manage to break their own ground. Just as this new New China would capture the attention of cultural observers in the West, the artist Xing Danwen acted as a visual intermediary, code switching between artist, photojournalist, and participant.

Editor’s Note: These images originally appeared in LEAP magazine’s June issue.

Born in Xi’an, China, Beijing-based artist Xing Danwen received her B.F.A. in painting from the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing and M.F.A. in photography from the School of Visual Arts...
LEAP is the leading international art magazine of contemporary China. Published six times a year in Chinese and English, it presents a winning mix of contemporary art coverage and cultural commentary...