Design for the Shenzhen Sea World Cultural Arts Center (c) Maki and Associates

V&A to help develop museum in China

Patrick Steel, 21.05.2014
London museum partners developer in Shenzhen
The Victoria and Albert Museum (V&A) in London is to help develop a museum in Shenzhen, south China, aiming to promote Chinese design to an international audience as well as present the best international design in China.

The V&A signed a memorandum of understanding with Chinese state-owned developer China Merchants Group in December and, according to a spokeswoman for the museum, is now close to signing a final contract which would see it lend objects and tour exhibitions to the Shenzhen museum.

Museums Journal understands that the new museum will have a V&A gallery of contemporary design, featuring objects from the London museum, and a gallery for temporary exhibitions.

The new museum will build its own collection, but the V&A will provide the initial exhibitions until the Chinese museum develops its own programme.

V&A director Martin Roth said: “Shenzhen is one of the fastest growing cities in the world and its creative industries are central to this development.

“It is incredibly exciting for the V&A to foster a partnership with the China Merchants Group to develop a contemporary design museum in China that celebrates and reflects the country’s creativity.”

The museum is part of the Shenzhen Sea World Cultural Arts Center, located in the Sea World area of eastern Shenzhen, overlooking the ocean. This is part of a large-scale urban development that involves retail, commercial, and residential space. The museum building will also house a theatre, hall, private art gallery, and retail areas.

The museum is being designed by Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki, with construction scheduled for completion in 2015.

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