March 26, 2013

As part of the temporary exhibition, "The Other Side of the Earth" by Chun Arthur Wang, the Muscatine Art Center is hosting a panel discussion about the relationship between Muscatine and China. Mayor DeWayne Hopkins will serve as moderator for the discussion on Thursday, April 4th from 5:15 to 6:30 p.m. in the Muscatine Art Center's Music Room.

Mayor Hopkins will share photographs from his recent delegation trip to Hebei Province and will lead a session that explores the past, present, and future of building a relationship between Muscatine and China. Several panelists were part of the Mayor's delegation while others are "old friends" who hosted Xi Jinping, now the President of the People's Republic of China.

Panelists include members of the Mayor's Muscatine China Initiatives Committee such Tony Joseph, President of the Initiatives Committee and President of Joseph Industries; Sarah Lande, one of Xi Jinping's Old Friends, former Executive Director of Iowa Sister States and also a member of its first Board of Directors; Albert Liu of Musco Sports Lighting; Deb Hutton, President of Muscatine Sister Cities; and Bob Allbee, President of Muscatine Community College.

The panelists will explore topics related to the establishment of the friendship between Hebei and Iowa in the early 1980s, Sister States/Sister Cities past and present initiatives, the purpose of the Mayor's committee, Muscatine companies with operations in China, the 100,000 Strong Initiative, and other efforts to prepare current community and business leaders as well as future generations for working in China and with Chinese leaders.

In addition to the exhibition of paintings by Chun Arthur Wang, the Art Center has on display several cases of items on loan from Joan Axel, an Old Friend of Xi Jinping, and Mayor Hopkins. Among the items are gifts from Xi Jinping including a China Red tea set and two porcelain Chinese Gift Tea containers. Several photo books, scarves, and scrolls are also on display.

The Muscatine Art Center is located at 1314 Mulberry Avenue in Muscatine, Iowa. Hours are Tuesday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Thursday evenings until 7:00 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Admission is free. Donations are appreciated.




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