This guide was written by a number of curators, artists and industry professionals based in the UK and China.
Colin Chinnery is an artist and curator based in Beijing. He is currently Director for ShContemporary Art Fair in Shanghai. Chinnery was Chief Curator / Deputy Director at the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) in Beijing, where he was instrumental in setting up China's first major contemporary art institution. Previously, as Arts Programmer for the British Council in Beijing, he initiated major projects in experimental theatre, live art, sound art, and visual arts, bringing a wider public into contact with experimental art.
An active artist in his own right, Chinnery co-founded the Complete Art Experience Project (2005-6). Chinnery has also served as artistic advisor to a wide range of institutions and events, ranging from Tate Collections to Norman Foster's Beijing International Airport. Chinnery is currently a contributor and critic for Artforum.
Helen Couchman was born in England and studied in London graduating with an M.A. in 1998. She has a fascination for travel and has worked abroad when possible, - in Armenia, USA and Cyprus. Arriving in Beijing on the Trans-Mongolian train she was immediately taken with Beijing due to a long held interest in the country and particular in places that are changing fast.
Couchman's book WORKERS å·¥äºº celebrates 143 men and women working on the 2008 Olympic building site with their signatures. She is preparing photographic works to be exhibited in London and a second book, Mrs. West's Hats, remembering her grandmother.
Ann Jones has over 25 years experience of working in the contemporary arts sector and an extensive national and international network. Ann founded the agency ArtProjects and Solutions in 2000 which works to help organisations and individuals achieve their aims. Ann works with clients on developing strategies that enable organisations to change, she also designs and delivers professional development programmes that nurture international exchange. Since 2008 Ann has been delivering a national programme for Arts Council England Forming Ideas - that aims to increase curatorial debate in the crafts whilst establishing international networks and collaborative working partnerships. One of Ann¹s key strengths is in brokering partnerships and establishing and sustaining networks. Ann is a trained Facilitator and Coach.
Livia started her career in 1999 in Beijing at The Courtyard Gallery, a world-leading contemporary Chinese art gallery. From there, Livia closely observed the growth of the contemporary Chinese art and the life of artists' in China. Additionally, she built extensive relationships with China's first generation contemporary artists such as Fang Lijun, Xu Bing, Liu Ye, Hong Hao etc. Prior to move to London in 2006, Livia co-founded Art Space Consulting, one of the first art consultancy firms in Beijing in 2003, providing advice and marketing solutions for clients such as China Guardian Auctions, Deutsch Bank Art and other commercial organisations.
Livia now works for the University of the Arts London (UAL) as International Business Development Manager, where she is responsible for expanding UAL's commercial services to the Far East, and in particular, greater China. Livia is also an active writer and regularly comments on contemporary Chinese art and films for publications such as Financial Times Chinese edition, China Film News and The Art and Investment magazine.
Pekin Fine Arts is a Beijing-based private consultancy and art gallery established by Meg Maggio in November 2005. Ms. Maggio is a 20-year China resident, arts writer, curator and director of Pekin Fine Arts gallery, in Beijing. Ms. Maggio acts as advisor to leading museums, corporations and individuals on collecting and exhibiting contemporary art. With over 600 square meters of exhibition space designed by Beijing-based artist/architect Ai Weiwei, Pekin Fine Arts strives to represent and to promote the best and most innovative contemporary artists from Asia, focusing on individuals adept at working in a wide-variety of medium, with experience in both domestic and international exhibitions.
Jiajia Wang's paintings depict fantasy worlds inspired by contemporary culture, fables and the history of painting. His dramatic canvases are a cultural mish-mash of Eastern and Western influences. Referencing both Western artists and traditions of Chinese landscape painting, Wang draws from sources as diverse as cinema, music, cartoons and computer games. Jiajia Wang graduated from Central Saint Martin's College Art and Design in London, U.K. with a BA in Fine Art. He now Lives and works in London and Beijing.
Iona Whittaker is a Beijing-based art writer who left London in 2009 to explore Beijing’s dynamic art scene at first hand. She splits her time between managing international media relations at experimental gallery Magician Space, her work as an editorial and archival assistant at the Intelligent Alternative and contributing articles to Artforum and Frieze online, LEAP, The Art Newspaper, Randian, artinfo.com and other publications.