These years, Chinese art is having a more and more important Academic status in the global art field, while the art market keeps going up. That is the result of continues development of contemporary art and changing of global politics and economy situation. Chinese art market is shaping the Chinese regulations with its own characteristics. The global regulations are relatively perfectly developed, while its counterpart in China has its own reality and ideals. They are against each other sometimes, but have been merging and learning from each other at the same time.
Ge Shike Former president of HK Min Chiu Society
Feng Yi Famous collector from Shanghai
Zhang Songren Art Controller of Hanart TZ Gallery
Song Chen Executive Editor of SCPM from Guangdong Times Media Co. Ltd.
Sun Ning Director of Platform China Contemporary Arts Institute
Zhao Yong Chairman of Shanghai Hosane Co, Ltd.
Yu Ding Director of National Art and Culture Policy Research Institute, assistant dean of School of CAFA and director of Department of Art Management, China Central Academy of Fine Art
Yang Xiaoyan Director of Journalism Department, School of Communication and Design, Sysu.
host: Mr Zhang Songren, you are known as the first generation of backstage driving force behind Chinese contemporary arts. The Four Big Kings spotlighted in global art market were shaped by you and your group. During this process, did you feel the gap between international standards and Chinese regulations?
Zhang Songren: What we want to talk about is imagination of culture. We value whether the imagination of culture promoted by us match up to the global one nowadays. We also consider about whether we can offer new sources of culture when we promote the imagination of it. Those are all considered when we promote new artists.
host: So, you think the secret of your success lies in having promoted artists measuring up to global imagination of culture?
Zhang Songren: Actually, collecting and investment are quite different. Collecting focuses on the value of culture, while doing investment aims to turn art works into kind of securities. High Prices of contemporary arts actually appears after long-time accumulation. For example, the fact that a painting of Zhang Xiaogang was sold in a high price in an auction during 2005 was not because his works suddenly became a investment. Instead, that was because his has attended lots of important international exhibitions from 1990s to 2005, and made people recognize him as the representative of an art generation in China. Virtually, the prices of his works had had an increase between 2% to 5% in 2004. Hence, the prices just exploded in 2005 after a period of accumulation.
host: Mr. Yang Xiaoyan has honestly analysed how reputation deviates from value of art works. However, when Mr. Zhang promoted Zhang Xiaogang into global market, he consider more about matching up to imagination of culture. What do you think about it?
Yang Xiaoyan: There is some imagination of culture in it. Let’s take Zhang Xiaogang as an example, the appreciation in his works shows that Chinese art market was developing rapidly. The price of his oil was about ten thousands USD, but no more than one hundred thousand USD. However, When Sotheby’s New York firstly had an auction of Asian contemporary art works, his oil reached 960,000 USD. This increase strongly motivated speculators, motivating them rush into Chinese art market. According to Zhang Xiaogang’s example, we can see that sometimes, sharp increases of paintings may not directly connected with the painter himself as we imagined. But despite Zhang, I believe that there are really some situations where the quality of works doesn’t measure up to their prices, which means there is still prevailing speculation.
host: Mr. Yang mentioned his worry about Chinese regulations. Then, Ms. Sun, could you tell me why Platform China is entering Hong Kong? Do you think Hong Kong is closer to global standards for the development of galleries?
Sun Ning: Actually, our gallery wants to function as a window in Hong Kong, showing more people what the new generation of artists from mainland are doing. Hong Kong will absolutely become Asian trading centre of art works, where I feel like lack some institutes promoting the new generation of artists. This shortage makes it possible for us to do something in Hong Kong, and that was why we are entering there.
host: Why this kind of work could not be done in maidland?
Sun Ning: We have been doing it in mainland. But since the world is plat, those who will be able to represent Chinese contemporary culture should not just stand inside the Greater China, rather, they should have a global vision and find their places in the world. So, for a gallery aims to popularizing Chinese contemporary arts, it’s necessary to do so.
host：Mr. Zhang thinks that to introduce a Chinese artist and art works should measure up to imagination of global art market. Could you tell us what do you think of it?
Sun Ning: “The Four Big Kings” are the first generation of artists bearing the responsibilities of showing Chinese contemporary arts to the world. As the second generation of new artists, we should do more than just satisfying the curiosity of foreigners. Instead, we could show our Chinese value, allowing them to understand what we are doing. Artists of the new generation should have their own style rather than adjust their arts to global standards. We seek for Chinese contemporary cultural value, introduce it, and let foreigners be familiar with it. Once, they realize the value of this culture, it would be recognized by them gradually.