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Speech by SCST at appointment ceremony of Xu Bing as Ambassador for Cultural Promotion (English only)
     ​Following is the speech by the Secretary for Culture, Sports and Tourism, Mr Kevin Yeung, at the appointment ceremony of Xu Bing as Ambassador for Cultural Promotion today (March 28):
Master Xu, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen,
     Good morning. It gives me great pleasure to announce the Government's appointment of Master Xu Bing, a world-renowned Chinese artist, as Ambassador for Cultural Promotion, with the mission of bringing Hong Kong to a higher level among the international arts community. This is particularly significant for Art March, when international and local cultural and artistic events converge in Hong Kong's vibrant arts scene.
     The Government is committed to fostering the cultural development of Hong Kong and strengthening the city's role as an East-meets-West centre for international cultural exchange as set out in the National 14th Five-Year Plan. In 2022, we appointed Dr Tan Dun as Hong Kong's first Ambassador for Cultural Promotion, and he had made a notable contribution towards elevating Hong Kong's status as a global hub for cultural exchanges and demonstrating Hong Kong's cultural soft power.
     Master Tan has dedicated his efforts to showcasing young Hong Kong talent on significant international cultural stages, including performances in the prestigious Holland Festival and Edinburgh International Festival. Under his artistic vision, the brand-new Tan Dun WE-Festival was a resounding success, creating enjoyable experiences for local audiences and tourists alike.
     To extend this positive impact and momentum to other fields of arts, we have appointed Master Xu Bing as another Ambassador for Cultural Promotion this year. He will plan a series of large-scale art projects in Hong Kong to present its unique culture, thereby promoting cultural exchanges and enhancing the city's image in international arts scene. 
     Master Xu is widely recognised as one of the most innovative and influential contemporary artists for his unparalleled originality and creativity. He had served for several leading roles and was the former Vice President of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, bringing with him a wealth of experience in arts education. Having lived and worked both in Mainland China and abroad, his international exposure is exceptional as an ideal professional, enhancing Hong Kong's position in cultural exchanges and fostering the growth of our local talent. His works of art not only embody the beauty of traditional Chinese culture, but also integrate it with new elements. His artistic style has enabled more people to appreciate Chinese culture and art, as well as the development of new technology, earning him international acclaim. 
     The Hong Kong Museum of Art also houses one of Xu's most well-known works, "Book from the Sky". This ground-breaking artwork contains both traditional and contemporary elements, just like Hong Kong, which is characterised by a blend of Chinese and Western cultures as well as ancient and modern features. 
     We look forward to seeing Master Xu create more works with local characteristics and showing Hong Kong's exceptional cultural charm to the world. We believe that Master Xu surely can use his extensive global network and experience to help local young art talent to participate in internships or art exchange programmes on the Mainland and abroad, widening their horizons in art and cultural development. 
     Master Xu's artistic concepts about contemporary art, outstanding artistry and pioneering spirit will be a guiding and inspirational force for local young talent. Together, they will join hands to tell good stories of Hong Kong.
     Last but not least, I would like to thank Master Xu for accepting the appointment, and wish him every success in future collaborations. Thank you.
Ends/Thursday, March 28, 2024
Issued at HKT 11:40
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