RAM Director Larys Frogier New Year Address
Feb 16, 2015
When the Rockbund Art Museum opened in May 2010, the priority challenge was to anchor the professionalism of RAM in the context of the emerging private Museums in China and to points out a promising locus for a Chinese Museum to contribute to the development of international contemporary art. Today in 2015, after nearly five years of operation, RAM team is extremely proud to review such achievements and to welcome very warmly with the Chinese New Year as the celebration and the 5th Anniversary of the RAM!
In 2014, RAM continued its activities to the benefit of three ambitious exhibitions. The solo exhibition with the artist Bharti Kher Misdemeanors was the most attended exhibition of RAM examining tropes like the interlocking relationships between man and the animal kingdom and the attendant notions of hybridity, transmogrification, and ethics. Advance Through Retreat was deliberately a challenging exhibition to confront contemporary art with historical and conceptual perspectives, gathering a majority of Chinese artists. Ugo Rondinone BREATHE WALK DIE was made of fully new works produced especially for the exhibition, not as a display of artworks, but rather as a total art statement, offering the visitor a very strong visual and emotional experience combined with poetic and critical observations.
RAM always pursues its main mission to support contemporary artworks production and to develop educational activities. In 2014 RAM organized 97 events for the public. In many case these events were organized in conjunction with the exhibitions but also with extensions to topics related to urban creativity, new performances and sound art. The successful 2014 international symposium CONTEMPORARY ART, CURATING AND SOCIAL ENGAGEMENT IN XXIst CENTURY CHINA was conceived in with the Nottingham University. It critically explored differing cultural perspectives on the significance of socially engaged contemporary artistic and curatorial practices in China as well as the impact of translation between cultures on such practices. This multi-voiced, trans-cultural exploration revealed previously overlooked aspects of contemporary artistic and curatorial practice beyond those currently envisaged both within and outside China.
Through its programs, RAM always cultivates the tension between sensitive-emotional and thoughtful-conceptual exhibitions. Sometimes the two strategies are simultaneously connected in one project sometimes one strategy could be predominant, more popular or more academic. This risk taking is very important for the reputation of RAM as it positions the museum on the forefront of supporting and contributing to art challenges rather than just following the “spirit of the time”.
The promising 2015 year of the ram will offer extra stimulating perspectives for the Museum and its audience: from Mark Bradford stunning paintings with papers to the beautiful tribute given to the artist Chen Zhen who was born and educated in Shanghai, and also to the exciting second edition of the Hugo Boss Asia Art.
Last but not least: in May 2015, let’s celebrate altogether the 5th anniversary of the Rockbund Art Museum!
Please receive from RAM team our warmest wishes for the Healthy, Arty, Happy and Prosperous Chinese New Year!