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film review

Finnish director Mika Mattila successfully illustrates a rather abstract theme in this intriguing film: Can China's international art stars escape Western influence to create a truly Eastern art? His approach is to contrast the careers of two artists confronting the issue. The established Wang Guangyi, once a revolutionary pioneer of a Western-style avant-garde in newly opening China, is increasingly nationalist and seeks to Easternize art. Rising photographer Liu Gang, who is exploding into a white-hot art market with a critique of China's new materialism that appeals to Western curators, still needs to placate anxious parents, a demanding girlfriend, interfering mentors and government censors.

April 26, 9 p.m., Lightbox; April 28, 1:30 p.m., Scotiabank; May 2, 4:30 p.m., Lightbox.

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