Laurens Tan bio

Laurens Tan was born in 1950 in the Netherlands to Chinese parents. He spent over 30 years in Australia and pursued an academic career teaching design and art in universities in Australia, the USA and China. He lives and works in Beijing and Sydney.

Birth and Education

1950 Born August 7 in The Hague, The Netherlands
1972 Music Theory & Arrangement (AMEB), Sydney Conservatorium, Australia
1978 B.Ed. (Fine Arts) University of South Australia
1987 Cultural Studies, Hunan Normal University, Changsha, China
1991 Master of Creative Arts, University of Wollongong, Australia
2006 Doctor of Creative Arts, University of Technology Sydney, Australia

Selected Solo Exhibitions

2012 The China Code, Melvin Art Gallery, Florida Southern College, Lakeland, Florida, USA
2011 Happy Toy, Art Asia Presents, curated by Tally Beck Contemporary at
Art Asia Miami
Happy Toy, Tally Beck Contemporary, New York, USA
Happy Toy, Art Atrium, Sydney, Australia
2010 Chinese Toy Stories, Red Gate Gallery/Opposite House, Beijing, China
2009 Babalogic, 24HrArt, Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia
2007 The Depth of Ease, Anniart Gallery, 798 Art Festival, Beijing, China
BengBeng (Banana), Imagine Gallery Feijiacun, Beijing, China
2005 10th Anniversary, Restoration & Octogene Commission, Capitol Theatre, Sydney, Australia
2002 AdaptEnforce 14, Wollongong City Gallery, Australia
2000 Daze of Our Lives, Casula Powerhouse, Sydney, Australia
1999 Octomat, World Gaming Expo & Congress, Las Vegas, USA
1998 IndyCar Slot, Gold Coast Arts Centre, Australia
Profile of a Counter, Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada
1995 Octogene, Commission, Video Installation, Capitol Theatre, Sydney
1993 Skin, Michael Milburn, Brisbane, Australia
Gallery14 Contemporary Artists Series, Queensland Art Gallery, Australia
1992 Games & Voices, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, Australia
AdaptEnforce IV, Queensland Art Gallery, Australia
AdaptEnforce V, Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts,
1990 Re-sited References, Queensland University Art Museum
A Craving for Authenticity, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art
Obsession, Australian Embassy, Paris
1987 Chinoiserie, Macquarie Galleries, Sydney Australia
1980 Eyre, Painting, Ceramics, Greenhill Galleries, Adelaide, Australia
1978 Laurens Tan, Adelaide Fine Art & Graphics, SA Australia

Selected Group Exhibitions

2012 Art Asia Miami, Tally Beck Contemporary
Los Angeles Art Show, Tally Beck Contemporary
2011 Always on My Mind: home – Australia-Korea Media Project, Museum of Art, Seoul National University, and GANA Gallery, Seoul, South Korea
China One World One Home 2011, Qing Tong Museum, Ordos, Inner Mongolia, China
X-Field: Jumping City, RMIT @ CU Space 798 Beijing, China
My Australia, Kuandu University Art Museum, Taipei, Taiwan
Ming to Nirvana, Red Gate Gallery, Beijing, China
2010 Fat Art 2010, Today Art Museum at the Village, Beijing, China
Dialog IV, Bild Volksbad University of Applied Sciences, Jena, Germany
Asian Landmark, A Toyota Art Project, Iberia Center for Contemporary Art, Beijing, China
2009-2012 ZhongJian/Midway, China and Australian National Tour
2009 2009 ANZ Australian Film Festival, Sanlitun Village Beijing, China
Labyrinth III: Dangerous Liaisons, Li Gallery, CaoChangDi, Beijing
Another Silk Road, Ivan Dougherty Gallery, University of NSW, Sydney, Australia
2008 2D/ 3D Negotiating Visual Languages, PKM Gallery Beijing,China
Vernacular Terrain 2, IDAp, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia
2007-2008 Journey/Process, Red Gate Gallery Beijing, Eastlink Shanghai, Hong Kong
Cuisine & Country: Art & Food, Australian National Exhibition Tour
2007 Art for Television 1994-98, MAAP ArtRage, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia
2005 McClelland Contemporary Sculpture Award Finals, Melbourne, Australia
Helen Lempriere National Sculpture Award Finals, Melbourne, Australia
43rd Fisher’s Ghost Winner Open Art Prize, Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney, Australia
2004-2005 Isle of Refuge, Ivan Dougherty Gallery, Sydney, Monash University Art Museum, Australia
2004 Gambling in Australia: Thrills, Spills and Social Ills, Sydney Powerhouse, Australia
2002 Deeper Places, Casula Powerhouse, Sydney, Australia
1997 Pan Pacifica Multimedia Festival, Groningen, Holland
Lawyers Guns & Money, Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide
1996-1998 Death: An Insight on Life, Penrith Regional Gallery, Australian National Tour
1994-1996 Elvis + Marilyn: 2 × Immortal, Boston Institute of Contemporary Art, Cleveland Museum of Art, Mint Museum of Art Charlotte, Baltimore Museum of Art, San Jose Museum of Art, Honolulu Academy of Art, Philbrook Museum of Art Tulsa, Tennessee State Museum Nashville, Houston Contemporary Art Museum
1991 Australian Perspecta 1991, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Australia

Selected Appointments, Awards & Grants

2011 Adjunct Professor, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, LaTrobe University Melbourne
2010 Keynote Speaker, 22nd Popular Culture Conference, University of Nevada Las Vegas
2008 Australia China Council Research Funding Award
NAVA Marketing Grant
2007 Australia China Council Artist-in-Residency in Beijing
2006-2007 Australia China Council Artist-in-Residency in Beijing
2006 Adjunct Professor, Tianjin Academy of Fine Art, Tianjin
2006-2008 Member, Board of Directors, Wollongong City Gallery
2005 Winner, 43rd Fisher’s Ghost Open Art Prize, Campbelltown ArtsCentre
2004-2006 Member, Artist Advisory Group, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney
2003-2006 Head of School of Design, KvB/ Raffles Institute of Technology, Sydney
1998-1999 Australian Post Graduate Award, University of Technology Sydney
1998 Artist-in-Residency, The Long March, Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada
Keynote Speaker, 10th Anniversary Popular Culture Conference, University of Nevada Las Vegas
1997-1998 Artist-in-Residence, 1998 IndyCar, Gold Coast City Art Gallery, Jupiters Casino, Surfers Paradise
1997-2004 Director/Founder, Octomat, R & D Multimedia Design in Entertainment (Las Vegas & Sydney)
1997-2000 Graduate Exhibition Coordinator, University of Western Sydney Nepean Design, Sydney, Australia
1997-2007 Board of Directors Member, 4a/ Asian Australian Art Association, Sydney, Australia
1997 Presenter, 10th International Conference on Gambling, UNR, Montreal, Canada
Visiting Lecturer, Faculty of Environmental Design & Landscape Architecture, UCDavis, USA
Guest Speaker, Department of Cultural Studies Graduate School, University of Melbourne
Art Design Industry Grant, New South Wales Ministry for the Arts, Australia
Exhibition Development Grant, Museums & Galleries Association of Australia, National Exhibition Touring Scheme Program, Sydney
Art Design Industry Grant, New South Wales Ministry for the Arts
1996 Chair & Presenter, Objects of Belonging: International Conference in Multicultural Studies, UWS Nepean, New South Wales State Library, Sydney, Australia
New Media Representative, Regional Arts Forum, Australia Council National Funding Strategy & Policy, Sydney, Australia
Artist-in-Residence, Sculpture-New Media Department, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia
University of Western Sydney Design Research Grant, Australia
Exhibition Grants to Japan: Australia-Japan Foundation, Australia Council, Pat Corrigan Award
1995 Pacific Bridges, Conference Presenter & Advisory Board Member, UC Berkeley & UC Davis
Accreditation Advisory VETAB Board Member, KVB Institute of Technology, Sydney
University of Western Sydney Design Survey Research: Global Merchandising of The Souvenir
Australia Council Exhibitions Travel Grant to New York & Paris
1993 Artist-in-Residency, Queensland University Art Museum, Australia
Chair, Culture of Experiment: Multimedia & Video Symposium, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, Australia
Design Drawing Survey, Penrith Museum of Fire, University of Western Sydney Design
1992-1993 Lecturer, School of Design, University of Western Sydney, Nepean, Australia
1992 Inaugural Project Artist/ Artist-in-Residence, Wollongong City Council, New South Wales, Australia
Artist-in-Residence, Contemporary Artists Series, Tamworth City Gallery, Australia
1992 Artist-in-Residence, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Western Australia
Workshops in Drawing, Commissioned by the Queensland State Art Gallery, Brisbane, Australia
Artist-in-Residence, Faculty of Art History & Theory, Queensland University Art Museum Australia
Chair, Artists Forum, Australian Perspecta 91, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
1990-1993 Visiting Artist Projects: University of Tasmania, Queensland University, Brisbane; Edith Cowan University, Kalgoorlie College, Perth, Western Australia
1990 Project Artist, Gallery 14 Contemporary Artists Series, Queensland Art Gallery Australia
Artist-in-Residence, AGNSW at the Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris,France
Artist-in-Residence, Perth Institute of Contemporary Art & Curtin University, Perth, Australia
1987-1993 Lecturer in Drawing for Ceramics, Sydney College of the Arts, Australia
1987-1991 Lecturer, Creative Arts, University of Wollongong, New South Wales, Australia
1980-1983 Head, Department of Art & Craft, Whyalla Community College, South Australia

Exhibition Curator/Project Director

2011 Always on My Mind: home – Australia-Korea Project, Museum of Art Seoul National University and GANA Gallery @ Seoul Square, S.Korea
2010-2011 Arena-A Post Boom Beijing, LaTrobe University, Bendigo, Hazelhurst Arts Centre, Sydney,
1999-2006, Project Director/ CEO & Curator, R & D Production, Davis, California & Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
1999 Octomat, World Gaming Congress & Expo, Las Vegas, USA
Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, Project Contemporary Artspace, Wollongong, and Casula Powerhouse, Sydney, Australia
1995 Just a Memento, Regional Survey Design of Souvenirs, Project Contemporary Art Space, Wollongong, Casula Powerhouse, New South Wales, Australia, The Art of Tourism: New South Wales Tourism Conference
1994-1997 To Remember Buy, Design Innovations in Souvenir Design, University of Western Sydney Nepean, Regional Galleries Association of New South Wales, Casula Powerhouse, Sydney


Art Gallery of Western Australia (1984); Artbank Australia (1988); Arts Council of South Australia; Australian Embassy, Beijing (2007-08); Australian Embassy, Paris (1990); Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada (1998); Campbelltown Arts Centre, Sydney Australia (2005); Casula Powerhouse; Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (1990); Craft Council, Northern Territory; Curtin University of Western Australia; Galerie Cannibal Pierce, Paris (1990); Griffiths University, Queensland; Hunan Normal University, China (1987); Ipoh Gardens Development (Australia,1995); Lanyon House, Australian Capital Territory; Laura Civic Centre, South Australia (1980); Modern Sky Music, Beijing (2010); Moët & Chandon Foundation, Epernay, France (1990); New Parliament House, Australian Capital Territory; Orange Regional Gallery, New South Wales (1989); Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery, Tasmania (1984); Queensland Art Gallery; Queensland University Art Museum; South Pacific Forum Collection (National Gallery of Australia); Tamworth City Gallery; University of Wollongong, New South Wales; Wollongong City Gallery, New South Wales; private and corporate collections in Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, France, Germany, Lebanon, Switzerland, Holland, USA, and Canada.

Catalogs in Print

Happy Toy,
ed. Laurens Tan, 2011, ISBN 978-0-9871189-1-2, 60 pages.
Foreword by Tally Beck, essays by Gina Fairley, Judith Farquhar, Gordon Laurin, Norie Neumark, Angela Zito. School of Communication, Arts & Critical Enquiry, LaTrobe University, Melbourne; Tally Beck Contemporary, New York.

Always on My Mind : home,
ed. Boyoung Jung & Laurens Tan, 2011, ISBN 978-89-97044-02-3 93600, 76 pages.
Seoul National University Museum of Art; Australia Korea Foundation.

Arena: A Post Boom Beijing, First Edition,
curator & editor Laurens Tan, 2010, ISBN 9781921437212, 60 pages.
Foreword by Michael Rolfe, Director, Hazelhurst Arts Centre, Sydney, Australia.

Arena: A Post Boom Beijing, Second Edition,
curator & editor Laurens Tan, 2011, ISBN 978-0-9871189-0-5, 68 pages.
Centre for Creative Arts, LaTrobe University, Melbourne; Hazelhurst Arts Centre, Sydney.

The Depth of Ease,
ed. Laurens Tan, 2007, essay by Alison Kubler, 30 pages.
Red Gate Gallery; Anniart Gallery; Australia China Council.