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newsletter,may 2000.

updated sat 20 may 00


Clayart China on thu 18 may 00

CLAYART CHINA, May 2000, Vol. 10.
Tsinghua University-International Ceramic Art Exhibition, One piece for two

"CLAYART CHINA" is a newsletter emailed monthly to professional ceramic
artists who want to know about ceramic art in China and things related. This
newsletter will be a bridge between China and Western countries for the
ceramic arts. Comments and suggestions are very welcome.
(Copyright 2000, The Chinese Ceramic Art Council, USA. All rights reserved)

The Chinese Ceramic Art Council, USA.
P.O. Box 64392, Sunnyvale, CA 94088, USA.
Tel. 408-245-6271, Fax. 408-245-8756, Email:,,
Chief Editor, Guangzhen "Po" Zhou
English Editor, Deborah Bouchette

Brief Introduction to Chinese Art History and
Chinese Contemporary Ceramic Art
--- Guangzhen “Po” Zhou
( part 2 )
Decorative and stylized art - late 70's and early 80's.
The political themes were so changeable. After the Cultural Revolution, the
topic of art themes was discussed in the art magazines for a while. Chinese
artists were looking for art themes that would last for long time. What
themes should they use as artists? Many of the Chinese artists were looking
for "Permanent Themes." At the same time as the “Reform” and “Open Door”
policies in the late 70’s and early 80’s, many Chinese artists tried to get
rid of political elements in their art and create a kind of art separate
from social content. They believed "Art is for art's sake only" (which might
be called Aestheticism). If the artists had used themes from Socialist
Realism, the artists would have had to deal with "Class hatreds and power
struggles," but these artists liked themes of beautiful women, love couples,
mother and child, birds and flowers, etc. These paintings were normally well
balanced, colorful, decorative, and with sense of beauty. The artists
wanted to create a kind of art that dealt with love, peace and harmony.
Painting, sculpture, murals, and arts and crafts were installed in many
hotels, airport and train-station waiting rooms, and other public buildings.
At that time, a kind of stylized decorative ceramic table sculpture was very
popular in major cities. This kind of decorative art is still popular in
Mainland China even today.
Western Influences and Globalization,
Contemporary Ceramic Art in the mid 80’s
Along with the development of international trade and economic
globalization, the world became smaller and all cultures influenced each
other more profoundly. Western countries not only exported their airplanes
and high tech products, but their movies and life styles as well.
The new Chinese generation of clay artists emerged; most of them were highly
educated with very skillful and were teaching in schools. They were creating
non﷓functional sculpture and regarded ceramics as an art medium
instead of as a craft. They brought a lot of activities into the clay art
The Problems of Ceramic Supplies, Education and Art Marketing
In Mainland China, there still are not many clay supply companies. There are
no commercial glazes available in the country. Many clay artists have
difficulty buying clay materials in their local areas, and have difficulty
accessing clay facilities. At universities, the instructors have to bring
all their students to a ceramic production area, such as Yixing, and stay
there for weeks to create their art works.
Secondly, clay art education is still not as popular as it is in the
States. In Mainland China, the university level of art classes is usually
open to art major students only; other students are not allowed to take any
art classes.
The art gallery system is probably the third problem. The Chinese art
gallery / market system is not as developed or as popular as it is in
western countries. Many artists sell their art work at their homes or
through art auctions, and most of the art patrons are overseas Chinese or
I believe that, along with the development of the Chinese economy, Chinese
contemporary clay art will develop rapidly during the new century, and
hopefully they will keep their own Oriental identities during the global
cultural exchange age.
(The End)
The Pottery Workshop Gallery, Hong Kong.
Address: The Fringe, 2 Lower Albert Road, Central, Hong Kong
Tel: 852-2525-7949, Fax: 852-2525-7091,
The Pottery Workshop has played an important role over the last 15 years in
the development of pottery making in Hong Kong. Mak Yee Fun started the
Pottery Workshop in 1985 to revive the public's interest in the art of
pottery making. She started with two classes and there were 15 students a
class. Today, the Workshop has six resident potters, five of whom conduct 11
classes, teaching over 120 students nationalities and all walks of life. The
Pottery Workshop has brought in many internationally renowned artists to
conduct workshops and demonstrations, further enhancing the level at which
the Hong Kong artists make ceramics.
"A Celebration of Ceramics" features an outstanding collection of ceramics
made by 25 Hong Kong and overseas artists who, over the last 15 years, have
been involved with the Pottery Workshop. Renowned local artists such as
Rosanna Li Wei Han, Wong May Lee, Jakie Leung and Wu Wing Yee have utilized
the PWS Gallery to show their work. Also featuring overseas artists such as
Liz Cameron, Kasumi Katagiri, Jacqueline Li, Cassandra Ho and Alex Yeung who
were at one time instructors, resident pottery or administrators.
Today, under the direction of Caroline Cheng, the Pottery Workshop has come
a long way from its humble beginnings, achieving international as well as
commanding a tremendous local reputation. Works made by the Pottery Workshop
artists are many local department stores and shops, indicating a growing
interest in pottery. The works of many of the artists are recognized in
Mainland China and overseas as outstanding and creative.
The best way to communicate with different language speakers over a long
Many people say that the NCECA conference is just like a large,
international party, and clay artists are just like a big family. You can
make new friends or find hospitality everywhere in the world. But there are
still some language difficulties in between different people. When you need
to contact someone in another country, what should you do? Email is not as
popular in other countries as it is in the States. The best way to contact
non-English speakers is by fax. Then the recipient can have some one
translate a letter into her or his own language. (To call from the US to
China, you have to dial 011-86 plus the city code and phone number. Check
with your long distance carrier for phone rates to Asian countries.)
One clay piece for two exhibitions. The Chinese Ceramic Art Council, USA, is
pleased to announce that with one piece you can participate in two shows in
China: in October at the Tsinghua University-International Ceramic Art
Exhibition at the National Art Museum in Beijing, and in November at the
Shanghai Art Fair. The Chinese Ceramic Art Council, USA, will forward all
entry slides to the Tsinghua University exhibition committee for entry.
After the jurying, all accepted works for the Tsinghua
University-International Ceramic Art Exhibition (all pieces should not be
for sale) will be shipped to Beijing first. After the Beijing exhibition,
the pieces will be shipped to Shanghai for the second show. The Chinese
Ceramic Art Council, USA, will be responsible for shipping back the unsold
works at no cost to the artists.
(Please see the Beijing show information below, and check out the Shanghai
show information at For further information about
"one piece for two shows," please contact Po Zhou, Tel. 408-245-6271, Fax.

2000 Beijing, Tsinghua University-International Ceramic Art Exhibition.
Hosts: Academy of Arts and Design, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China.
Introduction: The Central Academy of Arts and Design at Beijing has merged
with Tsinghua University. The new name of the school is Tsinghua
University, Academy of Arts and Design. The Central Academy of Arts and
Design was one of the best ceramic schools, and with Beijing University at
Beijing and Fudan University at Shanghai, Tsinghua University is ranked as
one of the top three schools in Mainland China. The exhibition will be
located the National Art Museum gallery, which is the number one fine art
museum in mainland China.
Dates and Location: October 2 - 8, 2000, National Art Museum gallery,
Beijing, China.
Fees and Entry rules: No entry fee, but the participants must pay their own
round-trip shipping costs, or donate the piece to the school for no return
shipping cost. All pieces will be marked "Not For Sale." (If you participate
in the Chinese Ceramic Art Council, USA - Shanghai Art Fair 2000, your piece
can be marked For Sale in Shanghai, and there will be no return
international shipping cost for the artist).
Eligibility: International ceramic artists and the faculty and former
graduates from the school. All forms, vessel or sculpture, functional or
non-functional, are welcome. All works must be made primarily of ceramic
materials and there is no size limitation. Please send your slides,
application form and biography to the exhibition committee.
Jury: Exhibition committee.
Slide requirements: Slides must be 35mm color, standard mount, and should
be identified with the artist's name, title of piece and dimensions, and
indicate top of slide. Slides will not be returned and artists retain the
copyrights for all works that are accepted by the show.
July 15, 2000. Entry form and slides to be received.
August 15, Notifications mailed out.
Sept. 25, All accepted works must be received in Beijing, China.
Oct. 2, Opening reception.
Contact: Ceramic Design Department, Academy of Arts and Design, Tsinghua
University. 34 Dong San Huan Zhong Lu, Beijing, 100020, P. R. China
Tel. 86-10-6561-9739, Fax. 86-10-6561-9826.
Ms. Wang Junxia, Mr. Zheng Quan-sheng
To receive a prospectus in the US, please send the entry form with slides
and a self-addressed, stamped envelope to:
The Chinese Ceramic Art Council, USA
Po Box 64392, Sunnyvale, CA 94088-4392, USA
We will be gone for the Chinese Ceramic Cultural Travel to Mainland China,
Hong Kong and Taiwan, May 20 - June 14, 2000. I cannot reply to any emails
until we get back to the States. Have a good summer!
Please let me introduce myself. I am Deborah Bouchette, an artist in
several media, and partner in a small company called Aleatoric Art in
Oregon, USA. For the next year I will be helping the Chief Editor by
editing the English grammar and spelling in this newsletter.

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