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Art works replacing food
13/9/2004 13:28

A Western-styled villa on Huaihai Road M. will be transformed into a small art museum this year by the Xuhui District government - the first of its kind in the district.
The district is also asking foreign artists how to operate the museum successfully.
Chinese and foreign artists in the city can present their works to the museum's "jury of artists." Once approved, the works will be exhibited in the museum.
"We expect to build the museum into a cultural attraction," Jin Yumin, an official with the Xuhui Cultural Relics Management Committee who is also in charge of preparing the museum, told Shanghai Daily yesterday.
The villa, which is located at the intersection of Huaihai and Fuxing roads, was built in 1933 as the Hongying Library. Hongying is the given name of Ye Hongying, a local philanthropist.
For around a decade, the villa, which has received district protection, has been home to a series of restaurants.
After the district reclaimed the ownership from a Sichuan cuisine restaurant, it planned to develop it into a museum.
"It is good to utilize this excellent historic building as an art museum because it has a good location in the downtown and many people can visit it," Jin said.
The district expects the museum to be divided into several sections including an exhibition area, a multimedia facility and an entertainment corner.
Officials said the museum will update its exhibits regularly and will have a research team.
"The museum is quite a good idea to spread local culture to the world and I will be interested to participate in an exhibition," said Lu Zhide, a renowned painter who is also president of the Australia-China Culture Exchange Center.
He said that such government-run museums are very popular in western countries, such as a museum of Picasso's works in Barcelona, Spain. He also suggested the museum organizers collect a batch of works that reflect the cultural and historic characteristics of the district and the city.