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Artist exchange between East of England and China

15 April 2016

University Campus Suffolk this week hosted an artist exchange event between East Anglian artists and artists visiting from China.

The event was organised by Essex International on behalf of Basildon-based Phoenix Publishing and Media Group and saw five well-known artists from Jiangsu province in China share skills and exchange ideas with artists from Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk.

Essex International, part of Essex County Council, first supported Phoenix Publishing, one of the most influential large-scale Chinese publishing and media groups, in setting up a branch in Basildon, Essex.

The exchange builds on already well-established ties between the East of England and China’s Jiangsu province. It provided not only an opportunity for local artists to build links with their Chinese counterparts and vice versa but also to promote the region’s art with a view to exporting to China.

The artists were then given a tour of University Campus Suffolk’s Atrium Studios, an industry hub which offers studio and desk space to start-ups, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), artists and alumni.

Cllr David Finch, Leader of Essex County Council, said: “Essex has been forging links with Jiangsu for almost 30 years. What began as a cultural and educational link, has now become a significant economic and trade partnership which is now broadening to the whole of East Anglia. It is great to see businesses such as Phoenix Publishing showing that Essex Means Business by seeking to further strengthen these close ties through events such as this one.”

Robert Priseman, Senior Visiting Fellow in Fine Art, University Campus Suffolk & originator of the East Contemporary Art Collection said: “I'm delighted to have been asked by Essex International to be a part of an exceptional group of international artists from the East of England to meet, exchange ideas and build new creative partnerships with fellow artists from China’s Jiangsu Province. It is a great honour for us to meet our new friends for the very first time in what we hope will be the first of many new opportunities for us to learn, collaborate and work with each other in the future.”

For more information on Essex International visit