UCCA Beijing


2011.9.26 - 2011.10.3


On September 26, 2011, at 9:00 am, Beijing Design Week 2011 kicks off with Landscape of the Spirit: Chinese Design 2011, an exhibition of outstanding new Chinese design held at the China Shijitan Contemporary Art Center (CSCAC). The opening ceremony will feature nearly 300 specially invited guests and luminaries from the world of design, media and business; 26 designers from all over China, and exhibition co-curators Sun Wentao and Liu Feng.

Landscape of the Spirit: Chinese Design 2011 is jointly organized by Beijing Design Week, the Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) and the China Shijitan Contemporary Art Center (CSCAC). It is the only official government exhibition of original Chinese design during Beijing Design Week 2011. Exhibition Chief Curator May Xue, the CEO of UCCA, explains the concept behind the exhibition: “In naming this exhibition Landscape of the Spirit: Chinese Design 2011, we hope to encourage Chinese designers to have confidence and faith in their own local cultural traditions, and to rediscover the beauty of China and the joy of the East.” In Landscape of the Spirit, the curators and designers have created an Eastern garden filled with romance and atmosphere, a space in which to amble about and enjoy the scenery. It is a space bursting with designs and design products, furnishings and accessories, and other daily items that fill our homes and enrich our lives.

Exhibition co-curators Sun Wentao and Liu Feng note: “In this age of rapid development and a highly-integrated global economy, urban living is fast-paced, filled with adventure and risk. More and more, our lives are driven by material desires and consumer passions operating non-stop, 24 hours a day. The tranquil poetry of the Eastern aesthetic has disappeared, leaving us trapped […] with cold aesthetic symbols, [and pushing] our spiritual lives even further into the background. When what is uniquely ‘Chinese’ has been gradually adapted to conform to global tastes and expectations, it is rare to find anyone trying to make sense of the simple, natural, Eastern aesthetic that once informed our lives. Therefore, we are trying to do away with ‘design for the sake of design’, and return to our cultural roots, our native spirit, and the concept of ‘modest design’ that grew so naturally from Chinese soil.”

Zhang Changcheng, Deputy Director of the China Shijitan Contemporary Art Center, comments: “As we move beyond the old industrial modes of production, it is delightful to find a group of outstanding designers willing to work slowly and carefully, to focus on the idea behind the design, to pay more attention to what people need from design (and how these needs change over time), eschewing cold, cookie - cutter design in order to restore warmth and humanity to our lives.”

Landscape of the Spirit: Chinese Design 2011 is made possible by the support of associate organizer Red Star Macalline, a key partner in organizing Beijing Design Week 2011. At the opening ceremony, Red Star Macalline and the China Red Star Design Award will unveil the “Red Star Dream Factories” Project, which aims to promote quality Chinese design and foster the talent of young Chinese designers. In addition, representatives from over 200 home furnishing businesses from all over China will be in attendance at the opening ceremony and award launch, a testament to the business community’s strong interest in today’s up-and-coming Chinese designers. There will also be a special charity benefit auction of the Landscape of the Spirit: Chinese Design 2011 exhibition catalogue.


Beijing Design Week

The 2011 Beijing Design Week & The First Beijing International Design Triennial are scheduled to take place in Beijing from September 26th to October 3rd. Combined, they are an initiative of the Chinese Ministry of Education, Chinese Ministry of Culture, the China Federation of Literary and Art Circles, and the Municipal Government of Beijing, and are organized by Tsinghua University, Beijing Gehua Cultural Development Group and the Beijing Industrial Design Center. The international design resources gathered by BJDW will help Beijing move towards becoming a more creatively-enriched capital with better developed technology-driven design industries, while supporting Chinese design brands in playing a more influential role on the world stage. The ultimate goal is to transform “Made in China” into “Designed in China”.

Beijing Design Week is scheduled to be an annual event co-presented with one leading Chinese design institute each year. For 2011, we are collaborating with Tsinghua University, organizer of The First Beijing International Design Triennial. Together we present 2011 Beijing Design Week & The First Beijing International Design Triennial, an event comprised of six sections: Opening Ceremony, Beijing Design Forum, Theme Exhibition, Guest City Program, DesignHop and the Design for Beijing Award.

China Shijitan Contemporary Art Center (CSCAC)

Located on West Chang-An Avenue, The China Shijitan Contemporary Art Center (CSCAC) was established as a platform for international cultural exchange, presentation and dissemination.

Embodying traditional Chinese notions of multi-cultural influences, CSCAC is an open-ended, internationally-oriented, multi-lateral platform featuring cross-boundary art and culture presentations. It has a particular focus on contemporary art and its role in modern society.

With a total area just over 20,000 square meters, CSCAC is a unique art center, with distinct venues such as a media art gallery, art gallery, black box theater, members’ saloon, design product store and the only artists’ plaza in Beijing. All of these elements were designed as parts of an interactive matrix, able to function together or in separate units. Capable of holding many forms of events and creative presentations, CSCAC is the ideal environment for exhibitions, performances, premieres and conferences. CSCAC provides professional support and consultation services to individual artists as well as to organizations, making it the most ideal physical and operational center of contemporary art in Beijing.

The Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA)

The Ullens Center for Contemporary Art (UCCA) is a non-profit art center founded by collectors Guy and Myriam Ullens in November 2007. UCCA presents exhibitions of established and emerging artists and develops a platform for dialogue between China and the rest of the world. By visiting us, you actively contribute to the development of the Chinese contemporary creative scene: you give an artist an opportunity to present his work to a larger audience, a student an opportunity to attend a free lecture, a community a means to grow. As an innovative and comprehensive art center, UCCA offers a unique and compelling way of engaging with the public through art exhibitions, public programs, educational events, shopping and dining experiences. As a non-profit art center, all revenue generated is used to support UCCA’s arts and education programs.

Associate Organizer:

Red Star Macalline International Furniture Retail Chain

Since the Red Star Macalline was founded in 1986 by Mr. Che Jianxin, it has been our mission to build warm, harmonious homes and enhance our customers’ home environments. As a leading home furnishing company, the Red Star Macalline pioneered the creation of furniture chain stores in different provinces in China; was the first to purchase land, construct and manage large-scale home furnishing malls; and was the first to create the world’s largest theme-park style home furniture center showcasing “the homes of the future”. For 25 years, the Red Star Macalline has been an industry leader, raising the level of professionalization and standardization and pioneering the development of China’s home furnishing and home design industry. As a brand leader and entrepreneurial model, the Red Star Macalline is committed not only to helping Chinese citizens realize their dreams of home ownership and hard work, but also to giving back to society and serving the people: in the last 25 years, the Red Star Macalline has made over 35 million yuan in charitable contributions.

In the future, the Red Star Macalline will remain committed to developing a truly Chinese brand with a strong presence in the global marketplace, a brand that can stand as a model for both China and the world.