When I first came to Shenzhen in 1995, the idea was to find a group of people who were willing to be interviewed, fill spiral notebooks with handwritten notes, and return to Rice to write-up said notes in 1996, or at the very latest, 1997 and then writing my way into an academic position. That didn’t happen. Instead, I stayed in Shenzhen until 1998, finished the dissertation in 1999, held a post-doc for one year, and then began the transition from trying to secure a tenure-track offer at a US university to figuring out what an American ex-pat might do in Shenzhen, which was itself transitioning from being a manufacturing hub into an innovation city. Continue reading
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Check out what happens when Handshake 302 curates an exhibition that brings community together through history and art. A brief introduction to the “Migrations: Home and Elsewhere” exhibition that was up at the Longheu P+V Gallery from Dec. 22, 2017 through Feb. 4, 2018. More videos on our FB page; written documentation of our practice here.
Jonathan BACH opened our three-day workshop “Informal Plans, Planned Informality: Shenzhen as Model and Field” with the observation that our goal is not to map the borders between the proper city and its others, but rather to track the (slightly inflammatory, a bit delirious) algorithms that constantly produce those borders, which in turn keep re-producing the city. What does it mean, we ask, to document uncertainty?
Yesterday evening, December 29, 2017, I had the pleasure of listening to Agency (Ersela Kripa and Stephen Mueller) speak on the results of their Shenzhen residency. They walked accessible edges to produce drawings and embroidery patterns of data, the embroidery algorithms derived from the difference between reported and their on-the-ground measurements of air particulates. The talk was inspiring, not least for “Roller Blade Boy” who skated circles around us, pausing only to check out the data. Continue reading
The Migrations exhibition opened beneath bright sun and clear skies, bringing together people from Longhua and Dalang, as well as graduate students from Shenzhen University and Langkou aunties. The opening ceremony celebrated the central idea of the 7th edition of the Biennale “Cities grow in difference,” taking advantage of the contrasts between the restored P+V, its surrounding urban village, and the clean design of INFUTURE. These contrasts created a particularly postmodern aesthetic that celebrated three generations of migrants—Hakkas who came to the area 300 years ago, missionaries who arrived 150 years ago, and the Shenzheners who have been path breaking Shenzhen since 1980. Indeed, the these differences are the nutrients that have made Shenzhen’s unique migrant culture. Continue reading
On Friday, December 22, 2017 at 10:00 we will hold our opening ceremony. Come for a fresh take on history, stay for the sweet rice balls of the winter solstice, and learn about our multifaceted public program!
because the kids are just that cute! These pictures are from Nov 11 and Dec 3, if you have time, join us Sunday, Dec 10 and 17 for more afternoon fun at the P+V Migrations exhibition.
The activities organized for the Migrations exhibition aim to create knowledge about Shenzhen’s history and to catalyze reflection on how departure and arrival shape human lives. On the face of it, these are broad topics, more suitable for a classroom or seminar than a small gallery in a remote urban village. However, overcoming the distance between “downtown” and “the outer districts” is one of the central ideas of this edition of the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture (UABB), just as bringing “art” and “ordinary lives” closer together has been an ongoing ideal of Handshake 302. Continue reading
In the Republic, Plato argues that the faults of poets are many. In addition to being irrational, they—and this is their gravest fault, he says—“invent” stories about events that never happened. In other words, Plato conflated “story telling” with “telling lies.”
In fact, historians artists approach the past from two different perspectives. Historians are interested in figuring out what happened when and why, while artists explore the past in order to discover future possibilities. Continue reading