Rome, August 29 - Chinese art critic and curator Hou Hanru was officially named the new artistic director of Italy's national contemporary art museum Maxxi on Friday. "He's the right artistic director for Maxxi, the best at the international level to carry out this role," said Giovanna Melandri, the president of the Maxxi Foundation at a press conference. News of his appointment was announced early this month. Hou, who will assume the position December 1, said he was "honored and very happy to start this incredible adventure with Maxxi, even with its challenges". In the meantime he said he is brushing up his Italian, which he understands to some extent but speaks with difficulty. Hou comes to Rome after working as exhibitions director at the San Francisco Art Institute from 2006 to 2012. He has curated numerous exhibitions, including the French pavilion at the 1999 Venice Biennale. The four-year term at Maxxi comes with a salary of "slightly more than 4,000 euros net per month," said Melandri. "The pay is not comparable to that of other international directors, nor to what (Hou) earned before accepting the job".