Yo-Yo Ma has won the prestigious J Paul Getty Medal for his work as an artist who brings different cultures together through music. Established in 2013, it honours those who make an extraordinary contribution to the practice, understanding and support of the arts.
‘The Getty shares Yo-Yo’s commitment to artistic excellence and cross-cultural understanding,’ said James Cuno, president and CEO of the J Paul Getty Trust. ‘Our work around the world is inspired by the same values as those of Silkroad: that the best prospects of the future rest on a greater understanding of the interrelationship of the world’s many cultures.’
‘It is a great honour to receive the J Paul Getty Medal, and to have this very special recognition of the importance of cross-cultural engagement,’ added Ma. ‘Culture and communication are the keys to our work at Silkroad, and in celebrating both tradition and innovation, as the Getty has so successfully done, we are building bridges and creating trust.’
Ma will be presented with his medal in a celebratory dinner at the Getty Center on 17 October. March has already been a busy month for the cellist, with Kennedy Center naming him as an artistic partner for 2016-17. His calendar for April includes concerts at Kennedy Center and Carnegie Hall, while he appears at Piatigorsky Cello Festival in May.
Past winners of the medal include Frank Gehry, Harold M Williams and Nancy Englander. Artist Ellsworth Kelly, who died last December, has been awarded a posthumous medal.