A new exhibition at Osage Hong Kong, The Burden of Representation: Abstraction in Asia Today, is opening Saturday. Curated by Eugene Tan, it examines how artists in Asia have been and are continuing to rethink abstraction’s relationship to representation. The works of Yang Jiechang and Ding Yi mark an important transition in painting in China and a point of departure for the exhibition. Their engagements with abstraction happened during a time when figuration dominated the practice of painting in China, where the tensions between abstraction and figuration mirrored the tensions in post-war Euro-American art, between Socialist Realism and Abstract Expressionism. In 1980s China, abstraction was considered by the establishment as antithesis to social realism, as the former privileged self expression and subjectivity, as opposed to collective expression in the latter. The show also includes among others, works from Singaporean artist Jane Lee, Japanese artist Masato Kobayashi and Hong Kong Kit Lee.