Date Thesis Awarded


Access Type

Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)


Art and Art History


Xin Wu

Committee Members

Sibel Zandi-Sayek

Charles Palermo

Michael Gibbs Hill


This research project focuses on the first generation of No Name (wuming 無名), an underground art group in the Cultural Revolution which secretly practiced art countering the official Socialist Realism because of its non-realist visual language and art-for-art’s-sake philosophy. These artists took advantage of their worker status to learn and practice art legitimately in the Mass Art System of the time. They developed their particular style and vision of art from their amateur art training, forbidden visual and textual sources in the underground cultural sphere, and official theoretical debates on art. The history of No Name not only reveals the diversity of art under Mao, especially during the Cultural Revolution, but also suggests a new potential narrative of Chinese modernism that traces the inception of Chinese contemporary art to the Mao period.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

On-Campus Access Only