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The Australasian Museum in Fuping, China, opened with ceremony: fireworks, an impressive performance from a local drum band, ribbon cutting, plaque unveiling, showers of coloured paper and balloons, and, of course, speeches. The museum, a circular building of arches within arches, is an architectural delight which houses the work of the Australian and New Zealand artists who worked in Fuping during two different periods over the past 12 months. Along with the Scandinavian, French and North American Museums, the Australasian Museum is housed within the 1000 acre (40 ha) complex of the Fuping Pottery Village, some 70 km from Xian, Shaanxi Province. Also on site are the main museums for ceramics showing Chinese works and that of international emerging artists. More museums are planned and the whole site is destined to becaome a mecca for those artists wishing to work in China, as well as for visitors who have an interest in the ceramic arts.

At the opening speeches for the Australasian Museum, it was noted that Australia and New Zealand share a similar colonial history but are influenced by different natural and cultural landscapes. In Fuping we worked with serious intent, using unfamiliar materials and a woodkiln we built for our purpose, and we were able to call on the professional expertise and equipment of the factory in which our artist studios were housed. The resulting work on display was, therefore, exploratory but we were all inspired to experiment both there and in our own studios on our return home. Chester Nealie and Moyra Elliott also gave speeches thanking the hospitality of our hosts who made our residency in Fuping such a worthwhile and satisfying experience. See

Two major meetings are planned for Fuping. The first, in November 2007, is organised by the International Ceramic Magazine Editors Association (ICMEA) and will include a conference which has attracted speakers from around the world who will discuss aspects of contemporary ceramics. Also planned for the ICMEA event is the second exhibition of emerging ceramic artists who have graduated internationally during the past eight years; this exhibition, to be judged by the international editors, offers significant prizes as well as artist-in-residence opportunities. The second meeting is the General Assembly of the International Academy of Ceramics (IAC) to be hosted by the China Ceramic Industry Association, both in Man and Fuping, and held in September 2008.

It is not only in China that ceramic artists are active as you can see from the pages of this edition of Ceramics: Art and Perception. Exhibitions, events, books and critical opinions are all to be found. Some excellent articles are included and are worthy of more discussion. I welcome your opinions and look forward to reading the articles that are submitted to the editorail office.

At the opening of the Australasian Museum in Fuping, China, with the group of invited artists from Australia and New Zealand, 27 May 2007.
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Author:Mansfield, Janet
Publication:Ceramics Art & Perception
Article Type:Editorial
Geographic Code:8AUST
Date:Sep 1, 2007
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