Handshake 302

handshake-302 reimagines urban possibility via Shenzhen’s urbanized villages. The art space opened on October 20, 2013 in Shenzhen’s most iconic and most contested urbanized village, Baishizhou. Since then, we have participated in three consecutive editions of the Shenzhen Hong Kong Biennale of Urbanism / Architecture, and been awarded the first annual Shenzhen Design Award in the category of Creative Synthesis (2015) and a One Found grant for social innovation. Our most recent introduction (in Chinese) can be downloaded at 握手302介绍2018. We used to sponsor the 握手302驻村招募 The Handshake 302 Urban Village Artist Residency, which invited artists, writers, and scholars to engage Baishizhou for one to two months. However, the program ended when we were evicted from our space in August 2019.

Presently, we have been collaborating with other artists both face-to-face and online as we explore post-Baishizhou possibilities.

The following PDFs introduce our ongoing interventions.

迁徙 / Migrations catalogue 

CZC–Six Months in Baishizhou


墙迫症/My White Wall Compulsions 

And some background readings:

Figuring Post-worker Shenzhen

Laying Siege to the Villages

The End of an Era? Two Decades of Shenzhen Urban Villages

A film from “Of A Piece”, which was produced at the Shenzhen Art Museum, July 2-19, 2015:

Migrations: Home and Elsewhere was up at the Longheu P+V Gallery, December 22, 2017 through February 4, 2018:

For those with WeChat, we are now publishing an English version of our public forum. Scan us to join the conversation!


20 thoughts on “Handshake 302

  1. Hi,
    I read about your project in That’s PRD magazine and am interested if I can be a part of it?
    I’ve been living in Baishizhou for nearly a year and own a craft brewery making artisan beer right in the heart of this area.

    How can I help?

    • Joe! We went looking for you last month but found the doors closed. So, yes to collaborating! We will be having an opening on Sunday, May 31 (time not yet set, but I believe in the afternoon, 3ish). If you connect to me through WeChat (mary_ann_odonnell), I’ll bring you into the loop. Looking forward to meeting you in person.

  2. Pingback: join us in baishizhou! | Shenzhen Noted

  3. Hello,
    I’m a political sociology student from Sciences Po Paris. I’m currently in Shenzhen until the 23rd of February to do fieldwork for my master thesis on protestantism in Shenzhen.
    I have also read that you organized an exhibition before on Qianzhen Nuxiao, a historical protestant school for girls in Langkou. I have also come across your blog and book Learning from Shenzhen which were very helpful for my work.
    I was wondering if you’d have time these weeks to meet for a coffee. I’d be very interested in asking you some advices and questions.

    Best regards and Happy New Year,

    Juliette Duléry

      • Today is great. I have sent you an email, but perhaps it went into your spam file.
        We can meet this afternoon in Baishizhou. Contact me through we chat, mary_ann_odonnell

  4. Pingback: Cool New Book — ‘Learning from Shenzhen’ – VIVISXN | The bleeding-edge digital dossier showcasing all things cool

  5. Dear Ms. O’ Donnell,

    My name is Yuejia Peng, and I am a postgraduate Anthropology student at Leipzig University.

    I will do my field research in Shenzhen urban village on the identification of urban villagers, class identity, and etc. I have read the book ‘Learning From Shenzhen’ and some other papers of you, which inspires me a lot.

    I was wondering would it be possible for you to arrange an appointment for me some time? Thank you for your attention to this matter.

    Best regards,

    Yuejia Peng

  6. Pingback: The Serendipitous Making of Made in Shenzhen (Episode 1) – "to dance is to be truly alive"

  7. Dear Mary,

    Hope this note finds you well. I’m a TV producer from Denmark and we are looking forward to shoot a documentary about the generational changes demonstrated along with the booming of Shenzhen in many different ways. We found out about your stories while doing the research and are just thrilled to get in touch with you for potential cooperation and your insights in witnessing all. Would be so kind to share with me your contact info with me by sending me an email? 18862141081@163.com
    Thanks and look forward to hearing from you!

  8. Hi Mary,

    This is Dina from a media called BottleDream focusing on social innovation. I have read some reports about your stories in Shenzhen and I am planning to visit Handshake 302 these days. I really want to have an interview with you to get to know more about your whole experience and also the situation of Baishizhou. Hope to receive your reply. Thank you!


  9. Pingback: migrations: home and elsewhere | Shenzhen Noted

  10. Dear Ms O’ Donnell,
    My name is Monica Naso, I am a doctoral student in Architecture at Turin Polytechnic.
    I am currently doing research on contemporary Biennials exhibitions and their potentials in the interpretation and transformation of reality, offering new perspectives for design and social practices. I have considered UABB Shenzhen Biennale as one of the main case studies, as a temporary art event that interacts with physical space and social environment as in the case of Nantou.
    I will be carrying field research in Shenzhen – based in South China University of Technology- until late December 2018. I have read “Learning from Shenzhen” and “Shenzhen. From Factory of the World to World City” and considering your experience in UABB, I would be really pleased if you had time for a coffee, or an appointment.
    Thank you in advance and best regards!


  11. Dear Mary Ann,
    My name is Jen Lee. I am a PhD student of Peter Hasdell at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. My research is on how small stories can be reflected in local regeneration design through artistic practice.
    I’ve been told to check out Handshake 302 and am so thrilled I got to know about this.
    Would it be possible to meet you in person when I visit Shenzhen?

    Best regards,

    • sure. contact me through we chat mary_ann_odonnell. I will be away until mid january but we can meet before chinese new years.

  12. Dear Mary Ann
    I’m an artist based out of New Delhi, India, and I wanted to get in touch with you regarding the residency at Handshake 302. I’m finding it difficult to get updated information about it, I have a bunch of questions. Can you share your email with me? My email is pakhixsen@gmail.com.
    Thank you so much.

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