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Yan Li

Yan Li (2013 in Beijing)

… was born in 1954 in Beijing. He started writing poems privately in 1973 and taught himself painting from 1979, becoming a member of  the "Stars" group the same year, and publishing some of his poetry in the independent journal "Today". Yan Li participated in the two regular "Stars" exhibitions in Beijing in November 1979 and August 1980 where he became known for his daring works tinged with abstraction and surrealism. As a writer, he is identified with the Misty Poets, a group that gained notice in the late 1970s for their subversion of social realism via personal emotions and private imagery.

In 1984 he was allowed to organize an individual exhibition in Shanghai’s People’s Park. In 1985 he moved to New York meeting up with other Chinese artists like Ai Weiwei. In 1987 he founded  the quarterly journal "First Line" (Yi Hang / 一行, later continued as a net publication) that featured works of contemporary Chinese poets as well as translations of American poetry. He participated  in many exhibitions in China and abroad, his poetry and novels were translated into several languages. Yan Li now lives between China and the United States.

Interview with Yan Li (on October 27, 2013 in Beijing's "798" cultural district)

Here you find the Chinese text of the interview (an English translation will be provided later).


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