China Residencies: N&G is a joint venture publishing company and art consultancy. Can you tell us about some of the publications and printing projects N&G has organized since 2010?
N&G: We have done a few digital publishing and printing outsourcing projects on photography books since 2010. We are planning to arrange our first independently organized art exhibition later in 2013.
CR: When was the N&G Residency Program founded? By whom?
N&G: N&G Residency Program was founded in 2010, by two partners: Global Exchange Center in Beijing and New Media International, USA. Global Exchange Center has been working on cross-country cultural exchange for over ten years. Some of our participants in our training programs became our business partners, like Neal Matteo, the founder of New Media International, who took our Chinese language and cultural training program in Beijing, then became a good friend. We decided to launch a joint venture to provide a communication platform for contemporary artists in 2010.
CR: What motivated N&G to create a residency program in Beijing?
N&G: Our team has been promoting intercultural exchange and understanding for over a decade, this will continue to be our mission. Art is a part of culture and we place great value on face-to-face exchange. We hope we can help artists experience different environments outside his or her home base.
CR: According to your website, N&G is starting residencies in several cities in China. In which other cities do you have programs?
N&G: At this time, we have a residence program in the coastal city of Yantai, in Shandong province. More locations are in negotiation stage.
CR: Where will the resident artist exhibitions be held?
N&G: Formally, it is an arts showroom in the Financial District. The owner is our friend, so we can arrange a few days of events when we have the artists in our program.
CR: Is your residency also open to Chinese artists?
N&G: Our residence program accepts only international (non-Chinese) artists at this time. Of course we work with Chinese artists here to participate in the exchange, but we only arrange residencies for international artists.
CR: How many artists in residence have you hosted so far?
N&G: Formally speaking, only two. We have also hosted art students group tours in Beijing before launching this program.
CR: What kind of artwork have the resident artists created? Can you give us an example of an interesting project?
N&G: We had two artists from Sweden. The first was a photographer and the second was an artist who conducted research on the relationship between visual arts and language. The research project was very interesting as our center also provides language training.
CR: What is the shortest and longest residency lengths of stay you'll consider?
N&G: The minimum stay is 2 weeks and we do not have a maximum limit, but we usually do not arrange the program that is longer than 6 months.
CR: Is the program fee somewhat negotiable, in case the applying artists cannot afford it?
N&G: Yes, but there is a limit to how much we can do. We try to accumulate more information and experience to help the artists to find the funding for international artist residency programs. This issue can be discussed on case by case basis.
CR: Can you tell us a bit more about the opportunities you provide for residents to meet local artists and art students?
N&G: In general, the opportunities include the workshops with local artists, visiting tours to top Art Schools and Art Institutes in Beijing, tours to art centers like 798 and Songzhuang. We’ll take the needs of individual artists into consideration as we plan. It is very important for us to receive the project description from the applicants at an early stage.
CR: Is there anything else you'd like to add about the program, your mission, or the opportunities you provide for artists?
N&G: Our program is new one. Overall speaking, the artist residencies are fairly new to China, in comparison to those in Europe and in the USA. So I have to say that China Residencies is a great project and great idea to provide a China-focused platform for all the artist residence programs. It is great project with the goal to enhance the standard of all of participants in this community. We are glad to be a part of this community.
This interview was conducted over email by Kira Simon-Kennedy for China Residencies.