CFP for Conference - Re-examining Visual Modernity and Contemporaneity in Chinese Oil Paintings (6-7 November 2022, University of Hong Kong, University Museum and Art Gallery)

Shuo Sue Hua's picture
November 6, 2022 to November 7, 2022
Subject Fields: 
Art, Art History & Visual Studies, Asian History / Studies, Chinese History / Studies, East Asian History / Studies, Fine Arts

Call for papers for International Conference - Re-examining Visual Modernity and Contemporaneity in Chinese Oil Paintings, 6-7 November 2022, at the University of Hong Kong, University Museum and Art Gallery


Submission deadline: 1 June 2022

Submission email:


The conference aims to encourage multi-vocal discussions on developments of Chinese oil paintings in the 20th and 21st centuries. It is held in conjunction with the exhibition of modern and contemporary Chinese oil paintings at the University Museum and Art Gallery at the University of Hong Kong (September 2021-January 2022), an exhibition showcasing and studying the versatile aspects of the modern and contemporary Chinese oil paintings across a diverse spectrum of styles, techniques, and relevant discursive repertoires of the vigorous art exhibiting practices in museums internationally.

We invite international scholars to present research and critically engage with a wide range of topics including subject, genre and style, mediality, materials and techniques, the currency of ‘tradition’ in modern and contemporary Chinese paintings, cross-regional and cross-national interactions and encounters of global, regional and local artistic practices in and outside China, the spatial and temporal conditions of the interactions and encounters, the intersection of state-market dynamics and public-private partnership in art patronage, collections history, display practices and canon formation.

How did the modern and contemporary Chinese painters understand oil paintings? Did they depict nature in the same way as pre-modern Chinese painters? What does the artistic perception of the Chinese painters reveal about the relationship between artists and the nation-state and between public and private collections? How did the various artistic expressions in oil paintings spread through different regions in China over time? Could a systematic study of the Chinese oil paintings tell us something previously unknown about art, change in cultural politics, and the epistemological and sensory regime of modern and contemporary China?

The exhibition will complement the UMAG exhibition entitled ‘Tradition to Contemporary: Ink Painting and Artistic Development in 20th–century China” (2018). Paintings from the UMAG collections are presented and studied in ways that not only provide a multi-faceted overview of the various subjects and styles, but also invigorate an active dialogue on new directions for re-considering visual ‘modernity’ and ‘contemporaneity’ in China from its artistic sphere. The exhibition and academic program jointly unveil the art historical and cultural significance of 20th-21st century Chinese oil paintings, and a series of historical moments that continue to question and challenge what defines modern and contemporary Chinese art. The conference is hosted by the University Museum and Art Gallery, the University of Hong Kong.




All abstracts must be submitted in English. Paper proposals should include a clear title, a short abstract (max 300 words), brief biography with details of your academic experience, affiliation, and publications (max 200 words), your name and email address. presentation language: English/Chinese

Please submit your 25-minute paper proposals to no later than 1 June 2022. Notification on selection of presentations will be made by August 2022. Further information about the programme and registration will be announced after that date.

Based on the discussion during the conference the organisers will invite conference delegates to volunteer to prepare an interview video with museum curators in connection with selected paintings on display as part of the exhibition program.



Venue: 1/F Fung Ping Shan Building, University Museum and Art Gallery, HKU, 90 Bonham Road, Pokfulam

On site: Registration is requested: [online link TBD]

Only vaccinated, recovered or currently tested persons have access.

Online participation: The conference will also be digitally transmitted via Zoom. You can join the Zoom meeting at the following link: [zoom link]

Please note: depending on how the Covid-19 situation unfolds come fall, this conference may ultimately be scheduled online only.



Dr. Shuo Sue Hua


For further details about the University Museum and Art Gallery see:  


Contact Info: 

Dr. Shuo Sue Hua


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