Senior Biennale Curator Shengtian Zheng Receives Honorary Doctorate from Emily Carr University
Tuesday May 28th, 2013
The accolades keep coming in for Vancouver Biennale Senior Curator, Shengtian Zheng. In a ceremony at Emily Carr University earlier this month, Zheng was awarded an honorary doctorate alongside Chinese contemporary artist Xu Bing, and business leader and arts supporter Michael O’Brian. With a CV as impressive as Zheng’s, it’s easy to understand what the stir is about.
Over the course of his time in Canada, Zheng has been instrumental in introducing up-and-coming Asian artists to North American audiences. As Senior Asian Curator for the Vancouver Biennale, he was responsible for bringing Yue Minjun’s iconic “A-Maze-Ing Laughter” to Vancouver in our 2009-2011 exhibition, as well as Choi Tae Hoon’s “Skin of Time” and Liu Jianhua’s “Pillows”.
Born in China, Shengtian Zheng is an accomplished artist, curator, and scholar in contemporary Chinese and Asian Art. For more than thirty years, Zheng worked at the China Academy of Art in Hangzhou (his alma mater) as Professor and Chair of the Oil Painting Department. After immigrating to Canada in 1990, Zheng was elected as the Chairman of Chinese Canadian Artists Federation in Vancouver. From 1996 to 2000, he was the Secretary of the Annie Wong Art Foundation and Director of Art Beatus Gallery. In 2002 he co-founded Yishu: Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, the first English language magazine on contemporary Chinese art and has been Managing Editor ever since. He is also a founding member of the Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art since 1999, Asia Art Archive in North America since 2009, and is a Trustee of the Vancouver Art Gallery.
As an independent curator, he has organized and curated numerous exhibitions including Jiangnan – Modern and Contemporary Chinese Art Exhibitions (Vancouver), The Art of Proletarian Cultural Revolution (Vancouver, Toronto, Winnipeg), Shanghai Modern (Munich, Kiel), China Trade (Vancouver), Reincarnation (Toronto), Art and China’ Revolution (New York), and the 2004 Shanghai Biennale. Additionally, his artistic works have exhibited in China, United States and Canada since 1960s.
Through the Vancouver Biennale, Shengtian Zheng was awarded with the Sorel Etrog Lifetime Achievement Award for Scholarship and Curatorial Excellence in 2011 for his smart use of public art to bridge cultural divides.
Watch for more incredible curatorial work from Shengtian Zheng in our 2013-2015 exhibition. Imagine the possibilities!