China Academy of Art
Message from the President
Dear alumni, friends, and fellow peers,

Ninety-five years ago, on this particular day, Mr. Cai Yuanpei delivered a speech at our academy's opening ceremony. He said then that the mission of the National Academy of Art (later renamed into China Academy of Art) was for our people to enjoy true life through the love for beauty. During a time marked by cultural clashes between the East and the West, when we stood on the brink of a national crisis, Mr. Cai set his sights on the future − on the cultivation of future generations and the betterment of people's lives. The China Academy of Art is the product of the New Culture Movement. A century ago, New Culture academics believed that the key to solving the nation's challenges started from the reconstruction of our lifeworld, upon which Chinese people will realize self-awareness, autonomy, independence, and self-empowerment.

Ninety-five years have passed. Today, art is no longer the exclusive property of the Chinese literati. Instead, it has evolved into a theoretical and practical instrument in the championing of social innovations. Similarly, art education is no longer solely concerned with the cultivation of the individual mind and spirit, going on to become a successful academic field deeply rooted in the land of China. Today, CAA stands as the world's largest art academy. Its societal involvement and public influence are without parallel.

Ninety-five years have passed since then. Today, CAA has grown into an instituion with five campuses and ten thousand students and faculty members − an achievement hardly seen in both Chinese and international history.

We endeavour to build a “Campus Realm” while championing the co-shaping of physical spaces and individual spirits. We uphold the artisanal spirit of "thinking as philosophers and acting as craftsmen", thus creating an Eastern Vision comprising a whole series of artistic disciplines masterfully performed by harmoniously combing theoretical knowledge and practical action. On the cultural dimension, we pursue "diversified yet harmonious multicultural exchanges". Where education is concerned, we are "driven by global and domestic vision" and "integrated by humanities and technology". We are committed to nurturing individuals accomplished in both character and knowledge, versed in arts and science, in classical and contemporary learning, and in Chinese culture and global vision”.

In the year of 2023, the dawn of a “Post-pandemic Era”, as CAA celebrates its 95th anniversary and hopes to attain even greater height by the time of its 100th anniversary, we must decide how we shall embark on the new journey that lies ahead. In the face of such questions, our answer is to "get firsthand knowledge from the masters" and "follow in the footsteps of the great".

To everyone at CAA and to our friends, let us join hands and make this happen!
Gao Shiming
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