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National Museum hosts major exhibition of contemporary Chinese art

A New Horizon: Contemporary Chinese Art, an exhibition that examines the art of China since 1949, has opened at the National Museum of Australia in Canberra.

The exhibition is the second stage of a major collaboration between the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC) and the National Museum of Australia, the first stage was the highly successful display, in Beijing in 2010, of Papunya paintings from the National Museum of Australia's collection.

A New Horizon: Contemporary Chinese Art includes 62 Chinese ink-and-wash and oil paintings, 11 sculptures and a new media work that reflect on the development of China and the evolution of Chinese art.

"Art exchanges are a bridge for understanding and dialogue," said Fan Di'an, Director of the National Art Museum of China and curator of the exhibition.

"Under the theme A New Horizon, the exhibition chronologically presents the evolution of Chinese contemporary art in three distinct parts: 'New China', 'New Thinking', and 'New Century'. The exhibition shows how different generations of Chinese artists have drawn their inspirations from the tension between individual experience and the influence of the outside world, imbuing their works with a vital force," said Fan Di'an.

"Art lovers in Australia are quite familiar with the art of present-day China but the art of China in the decades from the 1950s to the 1980s is not as well known," said Andrew Sayers, Director of the National Museum of Australia.

"This exhibition is a valuable contribution to Australia's understanding of Chinese visual culture. It also serves as an introduction of some of the key artists working in China over the last 60 years. China is universally acknowledged as one of the most exciting and diverse contemporary art environments anywhere in the world," said Mr Sayers.

A New Horizon: Contemporary Chinese Art, an exhibition from the National Art Museum of China will be on display at the National Museum of Australia from 30 September, 2011 to 29 January, 2012. Admission is free. For more information about the exhibition visit: http://www.nma.gov.au/exhibitions/a_new_horizon

For interviews, images and more information please contact Dennis Grant on 02 6208 5351, 0409 916 481; Caroline Vero on 02 6208 5338, 0438 620 710 or media@nma.gov.au