Shanghai Project, and its theme of Envision 2116, considers mankind’s future – 100 years from now.
Shanghai Project serves as a platform to instigate new dialogues by inviting practitioners from a variety of disciplines, including not only liberal arts and social science, but art, science, technology, medicine and ecology, among others.
Under the co-directorship of Yongwoo Lee, Director of Shanghai Himalayas Museum, and Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director of Serpentine Galleries London, the Shanghai Project is organized by the Shanghai Himalayas Museum, co-organized by the Shanghai International Culture Association, with lead sponsors Envision Energy and Zendai Group.
With its unique characteristics, Shanghai Project collaborates with NGOs, educational institutions, art institutions and fairs to share the spirit of its inception “audience centered public project”.
Museum partners include Power Station of Art, Rockbund Art Museum, 21 Century Minsheng Museum, Yuz Museum and chi K11 Museum as well as West Bund Art Fair and Photo Shanghai.
Inaugural events for the first part of the project, or Phase 1, is composed of an architecture pavilion, design program, exhibition, library projects, children’s programs, community participation programs, open call projects, international conferences and other public projects over the course of 10 months, beginning September 4. Phase 2 of the Shanghai Project will commence this coming April, with exhibitions and research programs spanning 100 days.
Envision Pavilion & Programs
One of the highlights of Phase 1 is no doubt the Envision Pavilion, the symbolic structure of the Shanghai Project. This pavilion is designed by Japan’s internationally renowned architect, Sou Fujimoto, and is constructed at the Shanghai Himalayas Center. With thematic inspiration referring to the future of mankind 100 years from now, this architectural structure, due to its use of scaffolds, resembles a vision of the future: first, as the structure employs scaffolding for its skeleton rather than as a secondary material for construction, and second, as it emphasizes the architectural function of open, transparent space. Its total floor area, at 670 square meters, is not partitioned and allows for the free and open communication amongst its inner spaces.
Cildo Meireles’s large installation KU KKA KA KKA inside the pavilion provides a multi-sensory experience that explores two ecological possibilities of our future by juxtaposing the organic and the plastic. Meanwhile, Landversations, by Nigerian artist Otobong Nkanga and her root researcher team, presents a series of scenarios looking to heal the fractured relationship humans have with land,
culture and society in the pavilion. Furthermore, Canadian writer and artist Douglas Coupland’s outdoor neon sign panels is exhibited on the pavilion. Zhang Haimeng, Principal and Managing Partner of McKinsey Shanghai, creates an online game “Fast Forward Future 2116” together with his root researcher team, allowing all the online citizens to participate in “creating” a virtual society in
Century Park: Seed Planet and Shanghai Schlemmer
As another locus of public engagement, Shanghai’s largest park, Century Park hosted Seed Planet, a children’s pavilion designed by Liu Yi, and a new public work by Liam Gillick, Shanghai Schlemmer.
Qidian, Everything You Want To Know About The New Generation
Qidian, which loosely translates to ‘starting point’, is an open call program designed to tap into the talent and interests of China’s new generation of researchers and creative practitioners born since 1989. The resulting exhibition is one of the Shanghai Project’s major components, as it looks towards the future through the eyes of China’s new generation of innovators from various disciplinary backgrounds. More than 300 applicants from the fields of architecture, design, contemporary art, film, liberal arts and social science have responded to the open call and submitted their research. A jury of experts has chosen twelve innovators to exhibit their research outcomes in the Qidian exhibition this fall in Zhujiajiao. The exhibition is organized in partnership with 89plus, a long-term research platform co-founded by Simon Castets and Hans Ulrich Obrist. Eleven international 89plus participants have presented their projects in dialogue with the works by the Qidian finalists.