U of M Artists to Host Counterparts from Beijing
Part of growing partnership and creative exchange
Contacts: Kelly O'Brien, College of Liberal Arts, (612) 624-4109
Mark Cassutt, University News Service, (612) 624-8038
MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (07/30/2007) —Building a creative bridge between Minnesota and China, a delegation of artists from the Beijing Film Academy (BFA) will visit the department of art at the University of Minnesota from July 29 to Aug. 8. Visiting artists will include directors, photographers, scenic artists and instructors, many of whom will exhibit their work at the Regis Center for Art Aug. 2 - 23. Also, there will be a reception that is open to the public 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 2, at the Regis Center for Art, 405 21st Ave. S., Minneapolis.
This visit is part of a budding partnership between the universitys art department and the BFA. In April of 2006 the BFA sent a delegation to Minneapolis and several other U.S. cities with the intention of establishing institutional partnerships. The delegation was most impressed with the program, facilities and arts community at the University of Minnesota. They expressed their admiration for the artistic vitality of the region as a whole, mentioning resources such as the Walker Art Center and the Minneapolis Institute of Arts.
Since that visit, U of M art faculty members have visited BFA twice, last month bringing a small contingent of students and film faculty who exhibited their work in Beijing. The objective of these visits is to begin a sustainable collaboration, and to explore ideas brought forward by faculty, staff and students from both institutions.
U of M art students will begin their exchanges with BFA students this fall. Via e-mail exchange, art students will collaborate with BFA students from a variety of disciplines on thematic projects. The results of these collaborations will be published in a catalogue by the BFA.
In addition, U of M art students and faculty will participate this October in the Bamboo Festival, an international exhibition of photography taking place in the Bamboo Forest National Park outside Shanghai.
Professor Thomas Rose from the department of art is coordinating the partnership with BFA. He sees many benefits for both institutions; for instance, BFA students have strong technique in animation and film and video production, but they arent as exposed to experimentation as U of M students are. The interests of the university and the art department are served by forming an alliance with the Beijing Film Academy because it will diversify our program and provide our students with access to world culture, said Rose. This is an opportunity for the faculties of both institutions to benefit from the cross-fertilization of ideas.