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Sept. 7, 2007 

The art world opens this week -- on a global scale. Check this out:

In China, Pierre Huberís first ShContemporary art fair, Sept. 6-8, 2007, brings together 120 hip art galleries in the coastal Chinese city. One exhibitor is Lothar Albrechtís L.A. Gallery, which has branches in Frankfurt and Beijing, and is presenting works by the Chinese artist Liu Ding (b. 1976).

Liuís life-sized Girl with a Golden Skull Standing on a Kidney (2006-07), made of colored resin, shows an ingénue in a little black dress, proffering a golden porcelain skull. A kind of 21st-century update of Edgar Degasí celebrated Little Dancer Aged Fourteen (1880-81) -- except it comments on the trade in human organs.

Also at ShContemporary is Italian photographer Davide Bramante (b. 1970), who overlays bright digital images of contemporary Chinaís urban fabric into a 21st-century phantasmagoria for his series "My Own Rave." His works, on view at the booth of Studio la Città from Verona, are an apt emblem of a bustling culture.

A little further north in Beijing, Courtyard Gallery has opened a show of rather tragic bonsai works by Shen Shaomin (b. 1956), who notes that the techniques for the ancient art require a kind of plant torture. Bonsai "is like foot binding, in that people consider such abnormality beautiful."

A little closer to home -- in London, a mere 3,500 miles away from New York -- the artist Gary Hume (b. 1962) is exhibiting a suite of paintings and sculptures called "American Tan." Apparently, we are "all being tanned by American policy and culture." Hume has a studio in upstate New York, and says the works began with cheerleaders and "the fluffy dynamism of cheerleading." Theyíre at White Cube at Masonís Yard.

Stateside, the threshold between representation and abstraction is also the terrain of Elyce Adams (b. 1973), whose first solo exhibition "Glow" is on view at Bridgette Mayer Gallery in Philadelphia. A series of intensely focused paintings -- they all measure 16 inches square, done in acrylic and oil on panel, with titles like Bounce, Fade and Touch -- suggest spots of light in a night landscape, a mixture of nature and culture with an otherworldly air.

And back in London, the MacArthur Fellowship winner Sarah Sze (b. 1969) has her debut show at Victoria Miro Gallery on Wharf Road. Titled "Tilting Planet," the presentation includes a major sculpture originally shown at the MalmŲ Konsthall as well as new works.

Through the Chunnel in France, Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin in Paris presents a show of paintings by Chiho Aoshima (b. 1974), the Japanese artist whose detailed, anime-inspired works are both ferocious and cute -- and very popular.

Other openings around the globe include a show of emotional, mostly gray abstractions by the Turkish artist Sara Baruh at Istanbulís, which also operates Turkeyís first online auctions.

The Rho Gallery in Seoul presents the witty Photo Realist paintings -- often depicting apples, in crates or sitting on magazines -- of Yoon Byung Rock.

And the Fraenkel Gallery in San Francisco is showing "Something Was There: Early Work by Diane Arbus," an exhibition of about 60 prints that is installed in all three of the gallery exhibition spaces.

A few galleries greet the fall season with a group show. "Most Humans Do Not Know Better" opens at Serge Zieger Galerie at Brooke Alexander Editions at 59 Wooster Street in New York -- the Swiss dealer has come to the city with next to no fanfare to present this exhibition.

Marc de Puechredon in Basel, Switzerland, is putting on "The Aesthetics of Anxiety," which includes a wall of sandbags made of luxurious black leather by Italian artist Simona Brinkmann.

And the delightfully titled "U Canít Touch Dis: The New Asian Art," curated by Eric C. Shiner, is at Zone: Chelsea Center for the Arts in New York.

For much more, browse through the links in Artnetís "Events" page.

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