"Canceled": Exhibiting Experimental Art in China

November 19, 2000 – January 7, 2001

"Canceled" was an unconventional exhibition. Its subject was not an artists or a group of art works, but another exhibition that was never realized: It's Me (Beijing, 1998), a group show curated by Leng Lin that was canceled by Chinese officials the day before its scheduled opening. Through a striking installation developed by exhibition curator Wu Hung in close collaboration with visual artists Song Dong, documentary filmmaker Wu Wenguang, and the Smart Museum, "Canceled" guided the viewer into the milieu of contemporary Chinese artists, fostering the (re)discovery of this aborted show and calling attention to the implication of its cancellation. The project raised questions about artistic freedom, censorship, and the relationship between experimental art and society at large.

Curator: Wu Hung, University of Chicago Harrie A. Vanderstappen Distinguished Service Professor in Chinese Art History, in coordination with Stephanie Smith, Smart Museum Associate Curator.

The exhibition was made possible by the Smart Family Foundation and Nuveen Investments. Additional support was provided by the Office of the Provost, the Cultural Policy Program, the Adelyn Russell Bogert Fund of the Franke Institute for the Humanities, the Center for East Asian Studies, Center for International Studies, University of Chicago, and John Bransten.

Catalogue available

Presented in the Richard and Mary L. Gray Special Exhibition Gallery.

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