Prof. Ying LI

06/05/2021 (Thursday) 13:00-14:00 E21B-G002

Casino Art Patronage and China’s Cultural Governance: The Case of Wynn Macau during Art Macao 2019

This study examines casinos as an institutional site for collecting and exhibiting art and the role of corporate art patronage in promoting local creative and cultural industries. The focus is one gaming company’s contribution to a city-wide half-year-long mega arts and culture events in Macao in 2019. Through site visits, collecting secondary data, and critical art historical analyses of artworks, the study integrates management science with humanities-based perspectives. It argues that corporate art patronage by the gaming sector in Macao is sensitive to Beijing’s desires and edicts to secure their license to operate in Macao. In doing so, they also signal to the SAR and national government, and the artworld at large, their penchant for large-scale installation art characterized by a spectacular, immersive, yet ephemeral experience, those that posit a decentered viewer as a private, non-political, hedonic subject. Though framed under the promotion of local creative and cultural industries, all installation artworks were “site-adapted” from elsewhere.  Nevertheless, casino art patronage in Macao does attest to the expansion in both breadth and depth of Macao’s cultural infrastructure and the gaming establishment’s commitment to instrumentalizing art for economic diversification.

And the bio

Dr. Ying Li is generally interested in art as visual communication practices in the context of cultural industries development. Her latest focus is on new media art installations, their aesthetic and collecting value, the curatorial practices around them, and their commodification and consumption patterns.  She approaches this line of inquiry through blending research traditions from art business management, visual communication studies, and media studies.