Episode 178: Wu Hung and Dan S. Wang

January 25, 2009 · Print This Article

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This week we welcome Dan s. Wang as a new Chicago Correspondent! He sits down to talk with the University of Chicago’s Wu Hung about the Smart Museum show “Displacement: The Three Gorges Dam and Contemporary Chinese Art.”

It is an excellent and interesting interview, however and unfortunately the last 10 minutes or so of this interview has same sort of technical glitch that created noise on the audio and makes the dialog difficult to hear, Bad at Sports regrets the problems.

Wu Hung (as lifted from the U of C website)
Harrie A. Vanderstappen Distinguished Service Professor of Art History, East Asian Languages & Civilizations, and the College; Director, Center for the Art of East Asia; Consulting Curator, Smart Museum of Art. Wu Hung specializes in early Chinese art, from the earliest years to the Cultural Revolution. His special research interests include relationships between visual forms (architecture, bronze vessels, pictorial carvings and murals, etc.) and ritual, social memory and political discourses. Also the consulting curator for the Smart Museum of Art, Hung is the author of Transience: Chinese Experimental Art at the End of the Twentieth Century (University Of Chicago Press, 1999), Monumentality in Early Chinese Art (Stanford University Press, 1995), Three Thousand Years of Chinese Painting (Yale University Press, 1997), and the forthcoming Remaking Beijing: Tiananmen Square and the Creation of a Political Space. Hung grew up in Beijing and studied at the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing. From 1973 to 1978 he served on the research staff at the Palace Museum, located inside Beijing’s Forbidden City. He came to Chicago in 1994.

Dan S. Wang
Printer, artist, writer, activist who divides time between his old home in Chicago and his new home in Madison.
Wu Hung
Dan S. Wang
Liu Xiaodong
Yun-Fei Ji
Zhuang Hui
Chen Qiulin
Song Dong
Peter Fend
Xu Bing
Zhou Enlai
Cai Guo-Qiang
The Beatles

4 thoughts on “Episode 178: Wu Hung and Dan S. Wang”

  1. Check out this Chicago photographer concerning The Three Gorges Dam:


  2. Balzac says:

    This show was seriously hampered by the bad sound, ouch. It is a pity as Professor Hung is a really interesting person, he is doing interesting work, and BAS has been lacking in a perspective on this sort of work.

    If there is a part 2 to this please fix the technical problems.

  3. Kathryn says:

    Hi Dan,

    Welcome to the crew! Yes, after 45 minutes it’s a wash, but before that, it’s fine. You did a great job interviewing and had a fantastic subject. You’re a keeper! Do another one!

    You’re using a built-in mic, and I did it on mine too in the last episode, and I’ve sworn I won’t do it again. But getting started with hand-held mics is a path, and you should meet with Richard or Duncan (I’d offer to help, but I’m still working out my own glitches), or go to Guitar Center and don’t leave the store until you have the gear you need to have good-quality sound.

    Still, great work. I’m fascinated by Contemporary Chinese art, if I wasn’t married with kids, I’d be there now, trying to cover the scene.

    Take care,

  4. Dan w. says:

    Kathryn, thank you for your kind words. Right about the under-representation on BAS and other outlets. I think the onslaught of new art from China is baffling to many, and sometimes irritating, as well. A lot of the curatorial treatment is woefully superficial. Wu Hung is really special in that his concerns are always substantive, and grounded in his training as an anthropologist. That Wu Hung does so much in Chicago is really an advantage of which people Chicago should be availing themselves more.

    Yeah, the mic. God. I did pick up a decent external mic, but then got all the wrong adapters. I gave myself so little time to prepare, and Wu Hung is so busy, that it turned out I didn’t have any choice except to either go for it or not do it for a couple months. And his show at the Smart was ending soon, so I erred on the side of timeliness. And paid a price!

    The other part of it, ie my performance, ugh…I’m not a broadcast guy, I’m a writer…so there’s plenty to work on in that dept.

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