From August 30th to September 13th, 2018, “On the 100th Anniversary of CAFA, Never Forget Why You Started: 2018 • Exhibition of Postgraduate and Doctoral Supervisors from CAFA” is on display at the Poly Art Museum. In the main it was planned by Su Xinping, curated by Chen Qi and Wan Liqun, and the academic host is Shao Yiyang. The executive curators are Xiao Huang and Ge Yujun and the exhibition is co-ordinated by Guan Hong and Qi Peng.
It coincides with the centennial celebration of the Central Academy of Fine Arts (abbr. CAFA) in 2018. As an important representative of Chinese art and art education undertaken since the 20th century, the Central Academy of Fine Arts has always inherited and promoted the national art traditions, borrowed from the world’s outstanding cultural achievements while taking the national art education as its mission, grasping and leading the teaching practices and academic construction of Chinese art education. From the originally absolute art education discipline, it develops into today’s modern comprehensive system of art education with complementary and intermingled advantages in plastic arts, design art, architectural art and the humanities while actively exploring a model education for high-end art talent, becoming a representative, leading and exemplary art school in the field of higher art education in China, and ranking high among the world’s leading art colleges.
The postgraduate education of the Central Academy of Fine Arts started in the 1950s, and CAFA became one of the earliest art schools to cultivate graduate students. It advocates the supervisor system and focuses on research consciousness. Famous artists such as Li Keran, Li Kuchan, Ye Qianyu, Liu Lingcang, Wu Zuoren, Ai Zhongxin, Luo Gongliu, Dong Xiwen, Li Hua, Gu Yuan, Huai Tianyou and Liu Kaiqu were among the first to become postgraduate supervisors of plastic arts at Chinese art colleges. After the reform and opening up, the Central Academy of Fine Arts resumed postgraduate training. From 1978 to 2018, it took 40 years to cultivate 35 sessions of students, including 2770 masters, 511 doctors, 719 MFA graduates and altogether 4,000 graduate students. At the moment, postgraduate education has become systematic and standardized, and made great progress in terms of academic echelon, academic research, postgraduate training, and teaching of the hardware systems and gradually established a disciplinary layout that is eclectic, comprehensive, and diversified.
In 2016, the Graduate School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts was officially listed, marking the Central Academy of Fine Arts as the first art school to establish a graduate school in China. This measure is also in line with China’s development plan for higher education, that is, graduate education is the top national education and is the core element of implementing an innovation-driven development strategy while building an innovative country. In 2018, on the the second anniversary of the Graduate School, a series of reforming initiatives were launched and a complete and sustainable academic and disciplinary system was gradually established.
In order to improve the quality of talent cultivation, “The Exhibition of Postgraduate and Doctoral Supervisors from CAFA” will use the annual exhibition mechanism to leverage the platform advantages of the Poly Culture Group’s art industry chain, to promote the integration of production and education, school-enterprise synergy, and form an advantage that the deep integration model of content resources and high-end industrial platforms of leading enterprises create cooperation between industry, universities and research institutes, promote the transformation of teaching research achievements, and jointly promote the upgrading and development of the art industry. The Graduate School of the Central Academy of Fine Arts continues to pay attention to the academic standards presented by the supervisors in the training program and training direction. It is hoped that through the exhibition, the links between the various disciplines in the Academy will be strengthened and the postgraduate education reform will be further deepened. On the basis of inheriting excellent teaching traditions from the Central Academy of Fine Arts and maintaining the advantages of high-level disciplines, they will break down barriers among disciplines, realize the opening and sharing of top-level teaching resources, and promote the cultivation of advanced artistic talent. Artistic creation has always been the strong point of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. In the current pluralistic social context and complicated epoch background, factors such as concept, culture and style are facing unprecedented changes at this time, integrating art creation and teaching methods while combining cultural inheritance with artistic innovation, it is devoted to reconstructing the traditional and contemporary artistic features, sorting out the inner working rules and cultural essential factors of social mechanisms and completing the contemporary interpretation of the Chinese culture and Chinese spirit through the exploration of artistic language ontology. This is also the academic goal that the exhibition is dedicated towards.
The artists participating in this exhibition are (in no particular order): Chen Xiangfeng, Li Ronglin, Yang Cheng, Ye Nan, Jin Rilong, Ma Xiaoteng, Sun Xun, Wu Yi, Qi Peng, Chen Qi, Tang Chenghua, Cao Hui, Chen Ping, Qiu Ting, Xu Hualing and Zhan Wang. The exhibition will be held on the third floor of New Poly Building at 3:00 pm on September 5th with an audience from all walks of life being welcomed to visit the exhibition.