Articles By: Andrea Zarate
Monika Lin has made a name for herself on Moganshan Shanghai art scene with contemporary work that explores the social problems in modern society. Despite government censorship of critical artistic expression, the 33-year-old Chinese-Latino American has lived and worked in China where many of her exhibits have created awareness of gender inequality.
In a garden along a narrow village road, Zhang Fie Feng plucked weeds amid budding trees while her 5-year-old granddaughter marched down the rows, ignoring her grandmother’s requests to collect discarded dandelions. Zhang, 56, is one of the women of Xiejiaqiao, a village where many women’s lives were defined by the social and economic environment in which they grew up.
More than 15 years have passed since the 1995 International Women’s Conference in Beijing spurred the creation of several NGOs tailored to combat domestic violence against women. Now they’re expanding the reach of their aid, partnering with lesbian, bisexual and transgender (LBT) women’s organizations in a national march toward gender equity.
While the trend is popularizing most reproductions of historical objects such as tin mugs, propaganda posters, and Mao Zedong’s famous Little Red Book, the turbulence many older Chinese felt during that time goes unacknowledged.