Big Macs & Marilyn Monroe: Art Asia Seems Oddly American

Categories: Art Basel
Art Asia is one of the few fairs to debut this year, though, as an annex to Scope. As the name suggests it specializes in contemporary art by Asian artists. The stated purpose is to demonstrate the influence of Asian art on the world, yet the most obvious theme found in many of the booths was America's influence on Asian culture. There were at least three pieces featuring Marilyn Monroe, a handful putting Oriental twists on American logos, and a lot of red, white, & blue. Makes sense though. This is an Asian art fair in America.

Like all the fairs, many selections are tailored in hopes that the merchandise moves. Maybe it's cynical, but some neuvo money bags is a lot more likely to appreciate a giant painting of a cheeseburger than he is a piece exploring uniquely Asian themes. Not that the American-inspired art was bad, it's just that there was so much of it. It will be interesting to see if the selection that galleries show when Art Asia makes its Switzerland debut next year (again in partnership wtih Scope) is quite as US-centric.

More pictures after the cut.

--Kyle Munzenrieder

The Logos IMG_2484.jpg


IMG_2462.jpg IMG_2460.jpgThe Marilyns

Xu Song, Welcome Monroe, 2008 at Linda Gallery; Yang Mian, Welcome China Cultural Revolution, Marilyn, 2007 at Eli Klien Fine Art; Zhang Wei, Marilyn VS Qui Baishi no 3 at Moonstar

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