Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Metropolis NOW! / White-Meyer House

Metropolis NOW! Exhibition through July 26, 2009

Thirty years ago, the United States of America and the People’s Republic of China established formal diplomatic ties. The result has been a relationship based on increasing dialogue, understanding and interdependence.

To commemorate this important anniversary and to celebrate the friendship between countries, Meridian International Center, together with the National Art Museum of China (NAMOC) in Beijing, and the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Washington, DC has created Metropolis Now! A Selection of Chinese Contemporary Art. This exhibition, a part of Meridian’s Art for Cultural Diplomacy program, builds on Meridian’s history of collaboration with China on artistic, professional and cultural exchanges.

The 52 works by 31 artists, selected by Meridian’s curators in close collaboration with leaders at NAMOC, reveal a China in transition and offer a compelling visual discourse about the enormous changes taking place in its cities – specifically, the major population centers of Beijing and Shanghai.

Many of these paintings, sculptures, video installations, and mixed media express a fascinating melding of old and new in Chinese contemporary art. Visitors to the exhibition in Meridian’s galleries in Washington, DC will see the swiftly changing urban landscapes and the implications of globalization as seen through the eyes of this extraordinary selection of artists.

The individual works of art in Metropolis Now! are powerful examples of the role of the artist as envoy – in essence, a cultural diplomat. While official diplomatic efforts among governments are well known, people-to-people exchanges are increasingly a vital part of the diplomatic equation if we are serious about building a safer and more prosperous world for all. Cultural diplomacy, of which this exhibition is an ideal example, offers us a neutral landscape where residents of countries around the world can meet in friendlier settings to consider issues, resolve difficulties, break down stereotypes, and learn more about one another.

Most importantly, this exhibition highlights a number of global trends which the United States and China face together, including globalization and urbanization, among others. Meridian International Center is honored to take this opportunity with you, our guests, to mark 30 years of friendship between the U.S. and China and to experience the power that the exchange of art and culture has in building mutual understanding.

Metropolis Now! is cultural diplomacy at its best.

Hon. Stuart W. Holliday
Meridian International Center
Washington, DC

Meridian International Center,
White-Meyer House (Cafritz Galleries)
1624 Crescent Place, NW, Washington, DC 20009"

Gallery Hours:
Wednesday - Sunday, 2:00 – 5:00 p.m.
Closed on Federal Holidays

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