Poster of The Start of a Long Journey

“The Start of A Long Journey – 2015 CAFA Excellent Graduation Works Exhibition” is the seventh round of the project which started from 2009.

As a major exhibition of the year, the exhibition features the selected works of 146 graduates of the master or bachelor’s degree from the School of Chinese Painting, School of Plastic Arts, School of Experimental Art, School of Design, School of Architecture, School of Urban Design and School of Humanities, through a strict academic assessment and careful selection. All participating students are highly innovative and curiosity, not only the graduates of CAFA, but also the hope for the future development in Chinese art circles. Through these works we can clearly see the current standards of teaching of CAFA, as well as the achievement of the stage.

“The Start of a Long Journey” has attempted to boldly breakthrough the traditional inner exhibition mode of an academy, after seven years of developments it has been successfully extended to the whole country, and becomes an important brand of academic exhibition of CAFA. 2015 is the first year for CAFA to bring about a comprehensive exhibition of “Graduation Season”, in a panoramic way it showcased the achievements by the graduates from all the disciplines at CAFA. “The Start of A Long Journey – 2015 CAFA Excellent Graduation Works Exhibition” will be open on July 5 after the graduation ceremony, and it will be the first themed exhibition for the graduates selected to attend it. It will be open to the public throughout the summer vacation to August 23.

At three o’clock in the afternoon on July 5, the exhibition was inaugurated at CAFA Art Museum. The opening ceremony adopted the form of “seminar” and it was presided over by Tang Bin, Deputy Director of the CAFA Art Museum, Gao Hong, Party Secretary of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Su Xinping, Vice President of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Chen Qi, Dean of the Postgraduate Division of CAFA, Wang Xiaolin, Dean of CAFA Office of Academic Affairs, Wang Huangsheng, Director of CAFA Art Museum and Wang Qifan, a representative of the graduates from the Printmaking Department had attended the discussions.

First of all, Gao Hong, Party Secretary of CAFA talked about the campus brand, “The Start of a Long Journey” which was forged by the Central Academy of Fine Arts and has three connotations: first, “The Start of a Long Journey” as an academic platform, for it provided a summary of the outcomes and experiences achieved by the art education of undergraduates and postgraduates from CAFA; second, it was an exhibiting platform, reflecting the styles of students while showcasing their academic attitude, ideals and beliefs, as well as their future development; third, it was an open platform, as it was geared to the needs of society and it was jointly created by top art schools in China.

As for the selection criteria of excellent works, Su Xinping, Vice President of CAFA subsequently introduced: first, it could be judged by the “difficulty” to create it, including the difficulty in thinking, namely whether it’s speculative or not, then the difficulty of the language, style and method should be taken into consideration, which mainly refers to the skills of painting, use of materials, as well as the effort; secondly, the “singularity” of work, which also involved the uniqueness of ideas and language, that is, whether an artist has an individual perspective; third, the “integrity” of the work, which could be related to the power control and accomplishment of the artist.

Chen Qi, Dean of the Postgraduate Division pointed out that, from the “Postgraduate Exhibition” in May to “Graduation Season” in June, then “The Start of a Long Journey”, all of the three exhibitions from three levels epitomized the educational system and quality of the Central Academy of Fine Arts. Furthermore, “The Start of a Long Journey” was another platform that communicated with society, through the annual tour exhibitions to other art colleges made further efforts to promote the development of the national art education and teaching.

Wang Xiaolin, Dean of CAFA Office of Academic Affairs gave an overall introduction to the graduation exhibitions and awards selections, there were 15% outstanding awards among the postgraduates at CAFA, 20% for undergraduates, among which, first prize accounts for 4%, second prize 6%, and third prize 10%. With these talents showing themselves at “The Start of a Long Journey”, it provides a comparatively comprehensive presentation of the current situation of art teaching at CAFA.

Wang Huangsheng, Director of CAFA Art Museum, in his speech, referred to art teaching and its achievements in China which have had a lot of attention internationally, this exhibition provided another opportunity for communications with other art museums. Wang Qifan, a representative of graduates talked about his sensitivity to graduation work, he believed that the graduation creation was crucial for a graduate as it needed total absorption in his or her work. In the process of creation, he needed to think over and over, constantly making his ideas clear and consequently accomplishing a good piece of work.

About the exhibition

Opening: July 5, 2015

Duration: July 5 through to August 23, 2015

Venue: CAFA Art Museum

Text by Yu Ya, photo by Xu Fan/CAFA ART INFO, translated and edited by Sue/CAFA ART INFO

Courtesy of the CAFA Art Museum, for further information please visit museum.cafa.com.cn.

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