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  • Book Talk, Speaker | 4 September, 2017 (18:00)Book now

    Art, Resistance and the Making of Modern China

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    Date(s) - 04/09/2017
    6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


    Embassy of Australia


    Dong Zhi Men Wai Da Jie, No. 21, Beijing, China


    (010) 5140-4111



    Entrance Fee

    FCCC Members free, non-members 100 RMB

    As a young foreign correspondent, Madeleine O’Dea arrived in China in 1986 to cover the “big story” of the economic reforms of Deng Xiaoping, but soon became caught up with another story lying beneath its surface, the story of China’s emerging artistic and intellectual avant-garde and their struggle for freedom of expression. Over the three decades that followed she came to realise how inextricably these two stories were linked and how the personal stories of China’s contemporary artists could also tell the story of the transformation of the nation.

    In her memoir/history The Phoenix Years: Art, Resistance, and the Making of Modern China, she follows the stories of nine contemporary Chinese artists, showing how China’s rise unleashed creativity, thwarted hopes and sparked tensions between the individual and the state that continue to this day.

    The book relates the amazing years of self-discovery and hope in the 1980s, which ended in the disaster of the Tiananmen Square massacre. Following that tragedy comes the story of China’s meteoric economic rise, of the opportunities that emerged and the difficult compromises artists and others have to make to be citizens in modern China today.

    Come and hear FCCC member, Madeleine O’Dea in conversation with Amy Qin, who covers art and culture in Asia for the New York Times.




    Madeleine O’Dea is a writer and journalist who has been covering the political, economic and cultural life of China for the past three decades. She first came to Beijing in 1986 as the correspondent for the Australian Financial Review newspaper, and covered China through the 1990s as a producer with ABC Television. She was the founding editor-in-chief of Artinfo China and the Asia correspondent for Art + Auction and Modern Painters magazines. She has written for a range of other publications including the Guardian, The Art Newspaper, Orientations, the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, the Toronto Globe and Mail, and The Australian.


    DATE: September 4 (Monday) 6-7:30pm

    VENUE: Australian Embassy Beijing, 21 Dongzhimenwai Dajie

    ENTRANCE:FCCC Members free, non-members: 100RMB. All guests must register via the website in advance and present passport/photo ID at the door.



    Bookings are closed for this event.