HC434H/HC431H - Modern China and the Art of Hung Liu (1948-2021)

Professor: Roxann Prazniak

4.00 credits

CRN 32961: Wednesday & Friday, 12:00-1:20pm @ LIB 101

Graduation Requirement: This class will fulfill a Social Science Colloquium and the Global Perspectives (GP) cultural literacy requirement.  If the student has already taken a Social Science Colloquium, this class will fulfill both of the following requirements:  an Elective Colloquium and GP cultural literacy.

The People’s Republic of China looms large in our geopolitical awareness, yet modern China’s history remains largely unknown to many.  I am writing this course description in November 2022 and by the start of class in April 2023 the world will have changed several times around at multiple levels.  It is impossible to know what developments may emerge, but there is no doubt that the PRC will be a significant player.  One artist’s lifetime spans the decades of Chinese Communist Party governance and offers a platform from which to consider a wider view of China’s modern history.  Born in Changchun, Jilin PRC, Hung Liu (1948-2021) became a student artist during the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s.  She emigrated to the US in 1984 and continued to practice her art while expanding her scope and technique.  We are fortunate to have some of her work at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art on campus and will have the opportunity to view selected pieces firsthand.  Hung Liu’s style is unique and can be explored within the contexts of Chinese traditional art, socialist realist literature, and American photography.  Her paintings cover a wide range of subjects that demonstrate a profound historical awareness and a focus on women. Our method will be to juxtapose specific examples of her art with selected historical readings to generate discussion around the complex domestic and international conditions that shape the People’s Republic of China today.