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So Many Openings: Animation, Photography, Performance Art, and... Surveillance
Busy weekend ahead for art aficionados in Shanghai, with a bunch of new shows opening around town. That kicks off this afternoon over at M50 with Zhang Qing's ShanghART solo, Boundary. That explores the psychology of surveillance, via CCTV monitors, covert photography, and downright unnerving footage of pedestrians captured from the same spot as the cameras that identified the Boston Marathon bombers in 2013. Head over between 4–6pm today for that one.

Right after, scoot over to Frequency Modulation at Arario on Hengshan Lu. The second solo by Yan Heng at the Korean–owned spot deals in personal experience, storytelling, and social ideology. Here, he turns his attention to the implications for mankind's real or imagined developments in science and tech. Trained in oil painting at Shenyang’s Lu Xun Academy of Fine Art, his canvases tread a line between cutting-edge and nostalgic. All that grandly opens at 5pm.


Yan Heng at Arario Gallery

Saturday’s openings start strong with Liu Chengrui’s Pagan at MadeIn Gallery. The M50 spot has been transformed into a kind of minimalist stage, set to host performance artist Liu Chengrui for one week only. He’ll be starring in his own one-man ‘pilgrimage’, exploring concepts around the infinity of life along the way. If performance art is your thing, head over at 2pm on Saturday, May 14.

To Art Labor next, where rising star Ying Yefu returns with a new series of ink paintings. Rather bleakly titled The Empty Space Between Hope and Despair, the exhibition’s mainstay is sparser, simpler works than the Xi'an-based artist's previous offerings. You could hit that up on Saturday rom 6-9pm for a glass of wine and heady contemplation of the double-edged sword of knowledge and the monotony of excess.


Ying Yefu at Art Labor

On Sunday, maybe roll over to MoCA to catch the Animamix Biennale, where 13 international artists working in animation and comics will be exploring the space between the virtual world and reality. This time around, the show's curated by media art superstar, Jeffrey Shaw. If his incredible show at Chronus Art Centre a couple years back is anything to go by, that’s a very good thing indeed. Expect mostly site-specific works, screenings of cutting-edge animated short films, and kids' animation playground, Park BOOMi by animator Trevor Lai.

Finally, a diminutive exhibition of works by long-term China resident Thierry Bornier kicked off last night as the first in a new series of short-term art residencies in the city. A reformed finance professional, the French photographer is known for capturing China’s most breathtaking of vistas, from tea terraces to Xiapu’s endless mudflats. The show and residency program come courtesy of Shirley Zhao, whose Huaihai Lu apartment -- AKA Shirley’s Temple -- will host international artists and designers for month-long stints in the city, culminating in a public exhibition.


God's Palette, Thierry Bornier

For all of that and more, check the art calendar here.

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