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Heather Straka: The Asian

Heather Straka: The Asian is the first major book on Heather Straka’s work and focuses on the recently completed painting installation The Asian.

Both the book and associated touring exhibition trace this thought-provoking project, in which Straka produced a Shanghai poster girl painting and then commissioned fifty Chinese artisans, from the Dafen Oil Painting Village in the Longgang District of Shenzhen, to each produce a copy of her ‘original’ work.

The twist in this project is that Straka sent her contemporary version of an early 20th century Shanghai poster girl, to be copied at its cultural source. The Asian brings into question the relationship between the original and replica, because as the commissioning artist Straka has not only duplicated aspects of the Shanghai poster girl tradition, she also intentionally concealed her hand by displaying all the paintings together without distinguishing her ‘original’.

This impressive publication provides a critical insight into the social, cultural and artistic implications of this important project, through the writing of Aaron Kreisler and a recent interview with Straka.

Book specifications:

ISBN: 0-908910-60-6

Pages: 55

Plates: 22 full-page spreads and 8 page double gatefold insert

Texts: An essay by Aaron Kreisler and interview with the artist by Robyn Notman

Binding: Softcover sewn

Stock: 190 gsm

Dimensions: 220 x 150 mm

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