@ Infinitum (Create+Lead+Learn) Exchange Exhibition Opening in China
On the bright morning of May 23, 2014, a large crowd of faulty and students from both universities gathered in the museum atrium, eagerly awaiting the official opening of this exhibition. Among them were a number of Hebei province government officers, art critics, and the Hebei Art TV crew: ___________xxx
This unique exchange exhibit features works of 36 faculty from both institutions. It uses 36 Quick Response Codes to highlight individual artist portfolios on the @ Infinitum website. By scanning each code via their mobile devices, exhibit audience members can access each webpage on the spot and review the bio, artist statement, and portfolio of each participant in both Chinese and English. The exhibit serves as a pioneering platform to foster greater mutual trust and intensified understanding among faculty members from both cultures.
When the opening ceremony began at 10 a.m., HNU President Jiang Chunlan delivered his welcoming speech, “Kent State University is over thousands of miles away, yet it is art that brings you here. This exhibition expands in space, themes, dimensions and styles, and in constant pursuit of diversity and originality….” Dr. Jiang, a mathematician who has established an App Software Center at HNU Research and Development Park, expressed his warm support of such an innovative use of technology to connect the professional art world with ordinary laypeople’s lives. He also emphasized that this cultural and educational exchange event had taken more than 1.5 years of planning and preparation before praising the numerous units in both universities involved in the project.
Among those present at the opening were Professor Jack McWhorter and Dr. Koon-Hwee Kan, with a group of KSU students representing three KSU campuses (Kent, Stark, and Tuscarawas). As part of the KSU School of Art 2014 Travel-Study to China Program, they were on their way from Beijing to Xi’an. Prior to their arrival at Shijiazhuang (a city of more than 9.5 million, south of the Chinese capital), the group had already climbed the Great Wall, visited the Imperial Palace, practiced tai chi at the Temple of Heaven, watched a kungfu show, tasted famous Peking duck, admired the adorable pandas, and experienced a number of historical sites. The group would be heading to their next destination by high-speed rail the following day: the eighth archeological wonder of the ancient world, the Terre Cotta Army in Xi’an.
For the rest of that day, the KSU students enthusiastically interacted with their HNU email pals, with whom they have been communicating for more than a month prior to their trip. The teams of students will be holding two exhibitions early in the fall semester, at KSU and then at HNU, to showcase their collaborative art and research projects.