UCCA To Open New Hebei Museum In Late 2018
By Dennis MAO
On September 1, Beijing’s Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) announced plans to open its first permanent exhibition space outside of the Chinese capital, UCCA Dune, later this year. Located in the Aranya Gold Coast Community, in the seaside Beidaihe District of Hebei province, a few hours by car or train from Beijing, UCCA Dune will be the first major contemporary art institution in the district, holding two or more exhibitions a year. According to the official press release, UCCA Dune is a “strategic partnership” between the UCCA Foundation—the non-profit arm of the Center, which is in charge of programming and operating both the Beidaihe site and the Beijing flagship—and the Aranya development project.
Designed by Li Hu and Huang Wenjing of OPEN Architecture, UCCA Dune has a footprint of 930 square meters, accommodating a café, a reading room, and seven indoor and three outdoor galleries. With sections of the building buried in the sand dunes by the Bohai Sea, the exterior was inspired by the image of a sandbox, while tunnel-like interiors evoke caves, one of humankind’s earliest “[sites] of artistic creation.” An additional smaller building, designed to be partially submerged in the sea and slated for completion next year, will also be part of the Dune complex.
The new museum’s inaugural group exhibition, titled “After Nature,” will examine urbanization and society’s changing relationship with nature in China over the past three decades through the works of international artists.
UCCA Director Philip Tinari commented in the press statement: “UCCA is excited to move beyond its flagship location in Beijing with a permanent presence in this stunning building in a gorgeous natural setting. We look forward to working with great artists to show their work in this new context, and to offering our members and visitors the chance for an unforgettable art experience by the sea.”
Dennis Mao is an editorial intern at ArtAsiaPacific.
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