Beijing Design Week 2017: Baitasi Remade

Exploring the historic and culturally relevant neighborhood's urban planning amidst tremendous growth

by Alessandro De Toni In a fast-changing city like Beijing, urban planners and designers puzzle over how to preserve the remains of historical identity while improving residents’ quality of life in old neighborhoods. Round upon round of demolitions and relocations have been reshaping the city and its social fabric for a good three decades. So far, commercialization and gentrification of hutongs have been the only …

Beijing Design Week: Jeff Dayu Shi’s “Yin Xian” Bamboo Collection

Reviving a Chinese tradition while adding a contemporary twist

by Alessandro de Toni Since 2009 Beijing Design Week has been a platform to spread design culture into a country whose aesthetics have been long trapped between faded echoes of past glories and mass-produced kitsch. While the discussion about a Chinese Renaissance, and how to revive traditions, takes place on TV, the path to shaping a contemporary Chinese style isn’t easy, as a fast-paced cash-hungry …

Chinese Artist Cao Fei’s BMW Art Car

For the first time ever, a digital version of the renowned auto accompanies the physical model

by Alessandro De Toni When it comes to the incredible speed of development in China, the other side of the coin is corruption, pollution, social disparity, wild urbanization and more—themes not only tackled by daily news, but explored by Cao Fei and many other Chinese contemporary artists. Cao Fei, a young internationally acclaimed Beijing-based artist, is certainly a standout name when it comes to portraying …