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English>>Life & Culture

Chinese curators eye West

By Liao Danlin (Global Times)

10:28, September 12, 2012

Wang Chunchen (Photo/Global Times)

Developing careers in art overseas, building a foundation

"They usually say that exhibitions of contemporary Chinese art in Western countries are all based on Western tastes. Like spring rolls, they are just a side dish in a sumptuous main meal of contemporary art. But now, they've asked a Chinese to be the chef, to see what the course will be," said Wang Chunchen, art critic, curator and the deputy director of curatorial research department at Museum of Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA), Beijing.

This year, Wang was invited by the Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum (EEBAM) at Michigan State University, East Lansing, to be an adjunct curator.

According to Art in America, a monthly magazine concentrating on contemporary art fairs, the director of EEBAM Michael Rush said that Wang was the first China-based curator hired by an American art museum.

Planned to open on November 9, EEBAM is designed by British architect Zaha Hadid, and the museum's collection will feature contemporary art around the world.

Shifting dynamics

Wang told the Global Times that EEBAM is an international museum incorporating arts from different countries and regions; this applies to the staff and management team as well.

Wang will be mainly responsible for exhibitions from China and Asia, and he views his long-term participation as an opportunity to show the art world a different side of China.

"China is at a historical moment and its changes are reflected in the arts. People are aware of this," said Wang, who sees China playing an increasingly important role in the global art system.

Wang is an associate professor at Central Academy of Fine Art, a prestigious art institution in Beijing.

He has organized many international exhibitions in the past, such as "CAFAM Biennale 2011: Super-Organism" in Beijing, "Infinity," in 2009, for Galerie Iris Schuhmacher in Berlin and "Mixed Maze" in 2008, for Red Mansion Foundation in London.

Wang has also published essays on art criticism, like Art Intervenes in Society: A New Artistic Relationship and translated academic works including Arthur C. Danto's After the end of Art and The Abuse of Beauty and Interpreting Art, written by Terry Barret.

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