March 17, 2008

Jerome Sans New Director of UCCA

On March 1st, Jérôme Sans joined Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) as its new director
Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) is a non profit art center founded in Beijing by collectors Guy and Myriam Ullens in November 2007. UCCA presents exhibitions of established and emerging artists and is developing a trusted platform to share knowledge through education and research.
The arrival of Jérôme Sans initiates a phase of new developments following UCCA’s successful launch led by artistic director Fei Dawei. Fei Dawei’s leadership, as well as his contributions to the preparation and successful opening of UCCA, has been indispensable. Before the art center project began, Fei Dawei was responsible for organizing research, collections, and exhibitions for years as director of the Ullens Foundation. Under his professional guidance, the Ullens Foundation became one of the most active organizations promoting Chinese contemporary art worldwide and also one of the largest centers for the collection of Chinese contemporary artwork within two years after its establishment in 2003. Fei Dawei’s rich experience in organizing exhibitions and his comprehensive knowledge of Chinese contemporary art circles led the Ullens to invite him to lead the preparation and opening of UCCA as artistic director. Since 2005, Fei Dawei has been instrumental in the successful establishment of the art center and was the curator for the opening exhibition: '85 New Wave: The Birth of Chinese Contemporary Art. During this period, he also continued his work as director of the Ullens Foundation. Having set the organization of UCCA on the right course, Fei Dawei has now chosen to concentrate on his primary interests of academic research and promoting art education.
Jérôme Sans has been known for rethinking the curatorial practice and approach, first as an independent curator then as an inventor of new models of institution, such as the world acclaimed Palais de Tokyo in Paris that he co-founded and directed until January 2006. After creating the Palais de Tokyo, Jérôme Sans moved to the UK where he became director of programs at the BALTIC Center for Contemporary Art in Gateshead. Jérôme Sans curated numerous international exhibitions such as the 2000 Taipei Biennial in Taiwan My Home is Yours / Your Home is Mine co-curated in 2001 with Hou Hanru at Tokyo Opera City, the 2005 Lyon’s Contemporary Art Biennial, and the 2006 Nuit Blanche in Paris. He is also the author of several books including Araki, published by Taschen in 2001, Au Sujet de about Daniel Buren, published by Flammarion in 1998, the recently released In The Arab World Now published by Galerie Enrico Navarra in 2008 and has contributed to various art publications. Jérôme Sans is among the most creative and adventurous personalities working in today’s art scene. ''UCCA’s audience is mainly composed of a new generation of Chinese in search of change and new things,” said Guy Ullens, founder of UCCA. “The choice of Jerome is a perfect fit for us.’’
Jérôme Sans’ ambition is to make UCCA a new model for private institutions, a place to live, and a platform for open dialogue. UCCA is acting as a beacon for the arts in China, as well as a major point of reference in the international art scene. Expanding beyond the traditional concept of a museum, Jérôme Sans’s goal is to develop UCCA into a distinctive destination that breaks the outdated mold of how an art center is perceived and welcomes a variety of audiences. “To achieve such objectives,” said Jérôme Sans, “UCCA will showcase the latest of China’s contemporary art, design, fashion, music and multimedia in a vibrant, exciting, alternative space, featuring a restaurant, a bar, a shop and a cinema, to offer a unique experience of contemporary creativity’’.
Jérôme Sans' experience, his far-reaching work on international projects with artists and key art world figures, and his long experience working in Asia for major exhibitions (Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, Bangkok) and with Chinese artists such as, Chen Zhen, Wang Du, Yan Pei Ming, Huang Yong Ping, Wang Jianwei, as well as curators such as Hou Hanru and Fei Dawei, will enable UCCA to further expand its cultural program and facilitate the access of its audience. While UCCA is an art organization in China serving local audiences, it has also brought together an international team. This expansiveness reflects the continued growth of cultural life in Beijing and stands at the center of UCCA’s vision. By being both local and international, UCCA aims to bring art dialogue between China and the wider world to a higher level.
Ullens Center for Contemporary Art
798 Art District,
No.4 Jiuxianqiao Lu,
P.O. Box 8503,
Chaoyang District,
P.R.China 100015

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