Alfredo Varas Setz
About Rodney Cone, Director.
A seminar on the history of Sino-Russian relations at Brown University in 1981 was one of the favorite research topics of Rodney Cone and was the the first step on a life spent working, learning and living in China.
In 1982 he moved to Taiwan to study Chinese Mandarin and in 1983 explored mainland China from North to South, East to West by train in the hard sleeper car. The symbols and language found in the propoganda posters of the first 30 years of the People's Republic of China still dominated the visual landscape as well as the spoken language, but China was changing and a new paradigm of economic reform and social change had sprouted and would soon break forth in one of the greatest economic transformations the world has seen.
Rodney worked in journalism, consulting and venture capital in Taiwan, Hong Kong and mainland China in the '80's and '90's. During 1991 -1993 he attended the MBA program of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania where he had the opportunity to organize and teach an MBA course on current economic development which included bringing students to Taipei, Hong Kong and Shanghai. At Wharton he also served as an officer of the Wharton Chinese Associtaion.
In 1997 he partnered with Stevens Vaughn in Xiamen (PRC) to create a commercial ceramics export business. A key part of this business was a ceramic sculpting studio headed by Stevens whose activites quickly expanded into collaboration with artists from China and Europe.
During their travels around China in the late '90's they noticed that large numbers of original posters from 1949 to 1983 were being sold as China cleaned out the old and brought in the new. A diverse collection covering major aspects of China propoganda posters was assembled in short order.
Today Rodney works as an investor in China and the United States and participates in learning and teaching experiences in China, Europe, North America and now South America.