Greek art on display in China

International cultural events are a recent phenomenon in China and have little historical background. Now though, the country with the fastest-growing economy in the world is preparing for its role in the 21st century by practicing its skills in putting together international fora. The Second Beijing Biennale is among these endeavors, and its theme is «Contemporary Art with Humanistic Concerns» (a nice socialist brushstroke). It opened on September 20 and runs for one month at the National Museum of Fine Arts and the Arts Museum of the Millennium Memorial, and it is organized by a plethora of local art bodies. Of local interest is that the Beijing Biennale 2005 features the work of 15 Greek artists, selected by a 20-member panel of curators after an international invitation for portfolio presentations. The Greek artists are: Sotos Alexiou, Christos Alevras, Roula Anagnostou, Chryssa Vathianaki, Maria Yiannakaki, Dimitris Gratsias, Thanos Zakopoulos, Polyxeni Kasda, Haris Kontosfyris, Alexia Xafopoulou, Stavros Panayiotakos, Giorgos-Pantelis Syrakis, Sotiris Sotiriou, Loretta Tsavaki and Anna Filini. Most of the artists acted independently; they learned of the invitation over the Internet, sent in their work and are now packing their bags for the long trip to the Chinese capital, where a total of 500 artists from 60 countries will be showing their work.