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Yalu River Art Museum, a place of contemporary art on the border


The Yalu River Art Museum is located on the Yalu River, which forms the boundary between China and North Korea. It is the only art museum on an international boundary, and it is determined to “straddle international boundaries” in its curatorial mission. Its orientation and choices place it at a sensitive critical juncture, where it will use multiple perspectives to expand the boundaries of value in response to the needs of artistic exchange. The Yalu River Art Museum will strive to truly become a museum for artists. The museum will be an “annual museum,” featuring only a single exhibition each year. A domestic or international artist will be invited to present their works throughout an entire year, and the museum will focus all of its energies on serving that artist, so that through the duration of the exhibition, the artist will truly possess the art museum, and the museum will possess the artist on a deep level. This is the “annual museum” the Yalu River Art Museum hopes to become. The original thinking behind this “annual museum” is to use the dimension of time to convey our respect to artists and their creations, and to provide artists with new possibilities in their approach to presentation. The artists can present their works in a conventional manner, or they can direct their thinking and creation at the unique condition of the yearlong exhibition, presenting many things that would be impossible without an entire year. In the context of artistic exchange, the “annual museum” model brought forth by the Yalu River Museum aims to reduce limitations of time and space on exhibitions through long-term displays, thus allowing for more profound and effective exchange. Throughout the year, the Yalu River Museum will use a wide range of methods to thoroughly promote the “annual exhibition” project, utilizing the entire year to carry out sustained promotion of the artist and the exhibition. The “annual museum” concept also guides the direction of scholarship at the Yalu River Art Museum, providing the time and space needed for proper research and affirmation of the invited artists and their works. The works featured in the exhibition, including the shifting configuration of artworks throughout the one year duration, can be publicly presented, researched and recorded multiple times across the year. The uniqueness of this model for artwork presentation and exchange is another reason behind the idea of the “annual museum.” In an open exhibition context with a diverse array of presentation methods and values for art, all art museums are seeking to establish their uniqueness. The Yalu River Art Museum hopes to provide artists with a new choice, that of the “annual art museum,” thus establishing its own unique character as it engages in an exploratory practice for the present and future of the private art museum.


The only art museum which is located on the national border in the world.


Just like the unique location of this critical point, it explores the boundary of values from a non-single perspective.


Each year, only one artist holds the main exhibition in the Art museum, and the museum is named after the artist. This is the concept of the annual Art museum we created.


In this context of in-depth communication, we build a bridge of communication with a linear length of time for artists and audiences, define our academic status, and explore the present and future of private art museums.


Across the river, we open the eyes of discovery and enlightenment for this city.


YAM | Exhibition Hall Introduction


The Yalu River Art Museum is a private non-profit museum of contemporary art. Founded in 2006, the Museum is located on the resort isle Moon Island in the Yalu River - which separates North Korea from the Chinese city of Dandong in Liaoning Province.


Situated just 200 metres away from river bank of dandong and 600 metres away from North Korea, it is the world’s only museum that is located on an international border. The Extension of the Yalu River Art Museum was completed in 2017.


The new exhibition space designed by the American architectural firm LOA Architecture makes it possible to showcase the various forms of contemporary art.


With four floors above the ground and a basement underground, the Extension has a floor area of 9,834 square metres. It has eleven exhibition halls covering a total area of 4,000 square metres.On the ground floor, the main exhibition hall has a ceiling height of 8 metres and occupies an area of 400 square metres.


the exhibition parlour has a ceiling height of 4 metres and occupies an area of 400 square metres. The second floor has four exhibition halls; each of them has a ceiling height of 4 metres and occupies an area of 650 square metres.The third floor has four exhibition halls with a ceiling height of 8 metres each and a total area of 800 square metres; the Sketch Hall has a ceiling height of 4 metres with an area of 200 square metres.


The exhibition hall in the basement has a ceiling height of 5 metres and occupies an area of 900 square metres. There is also an auditorium with an area of 240 square metres and an art repository with an area of 600 square metres.


The fourth floor sports a multi-purpose hall with a ceiling height of 5.6 metres and an area of 1,000 square metres. The multi-purpose hall provides a 260-degree exotic scenic view.


The Extension also boasts several ancillary facilities such as an art academy, riverside cafes and bars, as well as an art and design bookstore. The open-air rooftop terrace offers a panoramic view of the picturesque landscape across both countries.

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