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華藝 ChinaArts

Musicians, artists, writers, and scholars…
revealing the cultural heritage of China…
while highlighting themes of society in transition…

As Chinese modernity emerged out of the shadow of the Cultural Revolution and through the post cold-war economic boom, critics and viewers continue the debate over modern and traditional, East and West. Today the world looks closely at how artists (Chinese, Western, and expatriate) forge their identities—as interpreters of the tremendous political, industrial, and social change sweeping the Chinese world.

ChinaArts offers a template for viewing the expressive voice in contemporary, visual and performing arts. Through words and images, concerts and dance, artists investigate Chinese nationalism, regionalism, and what is called by some a “third space,” a place between East and West that defines art through the global arena and an international mainstream.

Highlights include:

  • A contemporary dance-theater work conceived by Shen Wei Dance Arts and inspired by a 17th century Chinese opera
  • An exhibition showcasing the creative partnership of visits to China between playwright Arthur Miller and his wife, photographer, Inge Morath
  • A public U-M faculty lecture exploring the world of traditional Chinese theater—a system of words, music, gesture and visuals
  • Visiting artist Xu Bing’s experiments with the relationship between script and power; known for creating “pseudo-characters” which look “Chinese” but can only be read in “English”
  • UMS concerts featuring Chinese-born pianists of international acclaim; Yo-Yo Ma; and instrumentalists on traditional Chinese instruments including the lute-like pipa, sheng reed organ, and 2-stringed violin or erhu
  • Cross-cultural opera-theatre and a threnody for pipa and orchestra by Bright Sheng (past inaugural and special events)

Center for Chinese Studies

theme year committee


for the media

China Now