Beijing: The “art” side: 798

Category: Design Travelers

Storyteller: Ines Delić, architect;

Photography: Ines Delić, architect;

My second time in the Chinese capital was a really short stay and I asked my aunt if she could show me a different side of Beijing, a side I haven’t seen before. Turns out Sanela had the best idea ever! 798 Art district, a place you wouldn’t want to miss if you are an art lover, visiting China.

Pošto je moj ponovni posjet glavnom gradu Kine bio veoma kratak, zamolila sam ujnu da mi pokaže onaj Peking, kojeg do sada nisam uspjela vidjeti. Ispostavilo se da je Sanela imala najbolju ideju, ikad! 798 Art District, je dio grada kojeg biste zasigurno željeli vidjeti, ako ste ljubitelj umjetnosti.

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798 Art District
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798 Art district

Located in the Dashanzi area, northeast of central Beijing it is placed in an old decommissioned complex of military factories, including Factory 798, which formerly produced electronics. The architectural plans for the buildings were made by the Germans in 1952, known as Project #157. The style was of course influenced by the Bauhaus design.

Distrikt se nalazi na području Dashanzi, sjeveroistočno od centralnog dijela grada, smješten u starom dekomisioniranom kompleksu vojnih fabrika koji uključuje i Factory 798, fabriku koja je nekada proizvodila elektroničku opremu. Godine 1952, Njemci su ponudili arhitektonska rješenja za cijeli kompleks, pod nazivom poznatim kao, Project # 157. Bauhaus dizajn, prepoznatljiv i vrlo privlačan arhitektonski stil, ovdje je izvršio snažan utjecaj.

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Rising above
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Fangyan Art Gallery

In the mid-nineties the contemporary artists and designers community was looking for a new home to settle. By this time the factory area was abandoned. Attracted by the unique architecture and vast spaces artists started to re-make the factory spaces continuously developing them into galleries, art centers, artists’ studios, design companies, restaurants, and bars. Here art is alive and real, with artists living and working in spaces that are in tune with past and the present. The crowds of art students, tourists and random passerby’s were as fascinating as the art pieces itself that you could admire on every corner.

Sredinom devedesetih godina prošloga stoljeća, zajednica suvremenih umjetnika i dizajnera bila je u potrazi za novim domom. U tom periodu su stare, beživotne fabričke zgrade bile napuštene. Privučeni jedinstvenom arhitekturom i širokim prostorom, umjetnici su su se počeli stacionirati u tim objektima, te ih kontinuirano razvijati u galerije, umjetničke centre, umjetničke radionice, dizajn kompanije, restorane i barove. Tu je umjetnost snažna, poticajna i stvarna, s artistima koji žive i rade u prostorima, što odišu prošlošću, ali ne ostaju u njoj! Gomile studenata umjetnosti, turista, slučajnih prolaznika, bile su fascinantne kao i sama artistička djela kojim sam se mogla diviti, te na svakom ostala zatečena! Zatečena divotom, umjetničkog estetskog izražaja.

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Atico Club
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Yoko Ono Exhibition – Faurschou Foundation
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Yoko Ono Exhibition – Faurschou Foundation
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Yoko Ono Exhibition – Faurschou Foundation
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Yoko Ono Exhibition – Faurschou Foundation
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GALLERIACONTINUA

But, one building fascinated me so much that I have the urge to make here some extra space to write about it. The GALLERIACONTINUA!

As the two of us walked through a small side street I suddenly stopped and gazed through a glass door. Something about the light that came from the inside impressed me. I walked in and was amazed! As much as the outside was inconspicuous the inside overturned me. The Bauhaus style was still intact. A huge space filled with natural light that came throughout large openings from the roof and longitudinal windows at the top of the 13 meters high walls.  I learned that the exhibition space of the GALLERIACONTINUA in Beijing was opened in 2004 with the goal to promote international contemporary art. Both, national and international artist develop projects specifically for the gallery space. I was lucky enough to admire the work of Serse, an Italian master of draughtsmanship. Only a few of his masterpieces revived the high walls whose beauty I wish to share here with you showing these photos! Other featured artist were Ai Weiwei, Daniel Buren, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Nedko Solakov, Manuela Sedmach, Chen Zhen and many more

Ali, jedan me objekat fascinirao toliko da imam potrebu, ovdje odvojiti dodatni prostor kako bih vam ispričala o njemu.: GALLERIACONTINUA!

Šećući se jednom malom sporednom uličicom, iznenada sam se zaustavila privučena neobičnom energijom što je izbijala kroz skoro neprimjetna staklena vrata. Nešto u svjetlosti koja se probijala iznutra me impresioniralo. Ušle smo u unutrašnjost galerije i ostale zatečene! Koliko god je spoljašnjost tog objekta bila neupadljiva, toliko je unutrašnjost u meni prevrnula osjećaje. Bauhaus stil je i dalje bio netaknut. Ogroman prostor ispunjen svjetlšću koja je navaljivala iz velikh otvora sa krova i uzdužnih proreza na vrhu 13 metara visokih zidova. Saznala sam da je izložbeni prostor GALLERIACONTINUA u Pekingu otvoren 2004. godine, sa ciljem promovisanja međunarodne suvremene umjetnosti. Kako domaći tako i međunarodni umjetnici razvijaju projekte posebno za ovaj galerijski prostor. Imala sam sreću da se divim radovima Serse, italijanskog majstora crtanja. Samo nekoliko njegovih remek djela oživjeli su visoke zidove čiju ljepotu želim, evo, sa vama podijeliti prikazujući ove fotografije! Ostala istaknuta imena koja su svojim radom oplemenili ovu neobičnu galeriju su: Ai Weiwei, Daniel Buren, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Nedko Solakov, Manuela Sedmach, Chen Zhen i mnogi drugi…

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Interior of the GALLERIACONTINUA
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Interior of the GALLERIACONTINUA
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Interior of the GALLERIACONTINUA
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Interior of the GALLERIACONTINUA

Bringing together architecture, contemporary art and culture with a historically interesting location and an urban lifestyle, “798” has evolved into a cultural concept influential on today’s concepts of urban perception. China’s artists have absolutely inspired new life in a vacated area of Beijing while breathing in innovation. Beijing has become a cultural oasis where artists of the world lay the foundations for a new, so far unknown art and architectural. Believe me, it is worth a visit!

Spajajući arhitekturu, savremenu umetnost i kulturu sa istorijski zanimljivom lokacijom, kao i savremeni urbani život, umjetnička oaza “798” je prerasla u svojevrsni kulturni koncept koji itekako utječe na današnje koncepte urbane percepcije. Kineski umjetnici su udahnuli potpuno novi život u zapušteno područje svoga glavnog grada, koje trenutno odiše inovacijama. Peking je postao kulturno središte u kojem umjetnici svijeta postavljaju temelje novoj, do sada nepoznatoj likovnoj i arhitektonskoj umjetnosti. Vjerujte, isplati se otići!

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