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Xu Bing, a key figure in the Chinese New Wave movement, gained international recognition for his iconic and monumental installation A Book from the Sky (1988). In 1990, he moved to the United States where he continued to explore the intersection of language and culture through visual media. He has had numerous solo and group shows, and his playful and probing installations earned him the MacArthur Award in 1999. In 2004, he won the inaugural Wales International Art Prize, Artes Mundi, for a work that incorporated dust from the World Trade Center site.
His Davis Museum lobby installation titled “Any Opinions?” addressed his fascination with words, calligraphy, the evolution of language and the juxtaposition of eastern and western cultures.
He was on campus to discuss his work on March 29, 2006.
The Xu Bing installation and lecture are funded by Kenneth Freed, Francis H. Williams, an anonymous donor, the Mayling Soong Endowed Fund, Wellesley College Committee for Lectures and Cultural Events and Wellesley College Friends of Art.