Cantor Arts Center Appoints New Curator of Asian Art

Stanford, California, January 24, 2008 — The Cantor Arts Center at Stanford University announces the appointment of Xiaoneng Yang as the new Patrick J. J. Maveety Curator of Asian Art. He is an internationally recognized scholar with 20 years of professional experience in China and the United States.

“Dr. Xiaoneng Yang brings a depth of scholarship in Asian art that is necessary to the growth and development of the Cantor Arts Center, and he joins us at a critical point in Stanford University’s commitment to the arts,” said Thomas K. Seligman, the John & Jill Freidenrich Director of the Cantor Arts Center. “His interdisciplinary approach and experience with collaborations will be a strong asset as Stanford creates new arts programs and expands partnerships on campus and with institutions in the Bay Area and beyond.”

Yang’s major field of interest is Chinese art and archaeology. He was educated as an archaeologist at Beijing University and obtained his doctorate in art history and archaeology from Washington University. Since the 1980s he has curated and organized international exhibitions, first as part of his responsibilities at the Ministry of Culture, Peoples Republic of China. From 1993 through 2007, he was a curator of Asian art at the Nelson-Atkins Museum in Kansas City, which has one of the finest Asian collections in America.

He curated and organized “The Golden Age of Chinese Archaeology: Celebrated Discoveries from The People's Republic of China,” which received international acclaim. The exhibition opened in 1999 at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., went on view at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and completed its U.S. tour at the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco. Then it traveled to the Tokyo National Museum, Japan, followed by viewing at the Millennium Monument Hall, Beijing, China, where it was chosen by authorities to be the opening exhibition to celebrate the 21st century.

Yang is the author, in English and Chinese, of numerous books and scholarly articles. His works have been translated and printed in Japanese and Italian. His books, published in Beijing, Hong Kong, Seattle, London, and Washington, D.C., include “New Perspectives on China’s Past: Chinese Archaeology in the 20th Century,” a two-volume set of more than 1000 pages. He has received numerous awards and honors, and he has been an invited lecturer around the world, with topics on archaeology, museum collections, ancient painting and sculpture, and contemporary Chinese art.

Yang’s new responsibilities involve developing exhibitions originating at the Cantor Arts Center and organizing the presentation of traveling exhibitions. He is also responsible for refining and developing the Center's Asian collection, which now includes more than 4,500 works ranging from 3rd millennium B.C.E. ceramic and metal objects, to 21st-century sculpture, painting, and photography. Yang will also be teaching classes at Stanford.

The Maveety Curatorship in Asian Art was established in 1999 with a gift from The Christensen Fund.

VISITOR INFORMATION: Cantor Arts Center is open Wednesday-Sunday, 11 am- 5 pm, Thursday until 8 pm. Admission is free. The Center has 24 galleries, with three devoted to displaying the Center's collection of Asian art. The Center is located on the Stanford campus, off Palm Drive at Museum Way. Parking is free after 4 pm and all day on weekends. Information: 650-723-4177,

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Xiaoneng Yang
Maveety Curator of Asian Art