Karen Smith
Independent Curator

Art for Change: Curating for All

Karen Smith is a British national, resident in China and specialized in the field of contemporary Chinese art. Her main activities are research, writing and curating. In mid-2012, she was appointed founding director of OCAT Xi’an, a contemporary art museum that is part of the OCAT Museum Group founded in Shenzhen in 2005. OCAT Xi’an opened in November 2013. Since 2015, she has also worked as artistic director of Shanghai Centre of Photography.

Smith’s writings can be found in numerous monologues and exhibition catalogues. She has contributed texts to Art Now Volume 4, Taschen, June 2013; Vitamin D2, Phaidon, 2012; Vitamin P2, Phaidon, 2011 and numerous other publications, including the Phaidon contemporary artist series, for which she authored the volume on Ai Weiwei (2009). She has produced her won books: Nine Lives: The Birth of Avant-Garde Art in New China (2008) and the series As Seen; Notable Artworks by Chinese Artists (2011; 2013; 2015).