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A specter of urban transformation is roaming the plains of Hebei countryside.
On the occasion of the book launch of “Speculative Grounds – Positions on Beijing’s Transformation” we invite you to take a walk through Greater Beijing’s urban transformation. After a screening of the film Shunqiziran by Sponge Gourd Collective, researcher and curator Antonie Angerer will introduce the publication “Speculative Grounds – Positions on Beijing’s urban transformation”. She will give glimpses into the works developed by an interdisciplinary group of artists, researchers, architects and many others within the research project Beijing22. The lecture will travel to future cities, search for green mushrooms, while hearing from different social worlds about their dreams, their experiences and the reality of living sandwiched between the yet to come what has already been lost.
The publication marks a first retrospect on the Beijing22 project initiated by curators Antonie Angerer, Anna-Viktoria Eschbach and photographer Jannis Schulze. The response of Beijing’s committee “No Snow, No Problem” to wondering journalists on how the Winter Olympics of Beijing would be able to take place in such a snow scarce place, marked the starting point for the project, choosing 2022 as a timeframe to investigate the urban changes happening until and because of the Winter Olympics. The proclamation of making the impossible possible was a glimpse into the drastic transformation Greater Beijing would be facing in the years to come.
About the movie:
Sponge Gourd Collective
Shunqiziran 顺其自然,H D video and 16 mm, 15 min., 2020
Xiong’an, China’s future megacity located in the center of Jing-Jin-Ji, is a landscape full of contrasts: modern cities and new forests are sprouting in empty corn fields, and the burial mounds of ancestors have been flattened. The video work Shunqiziran shows Xiong’an as a world of specter, in which local and non-professional amateur actors dressed in green-screen suits roam various landscapes.
About the speaker:
Curator and co-founder of artistic Beijing -based research platform I: project space around topics of urbanization, gender concepts in the Asia Pacific, independent space practice, and new media and digital art practices. Editor at tria publishing platform. Co-founder of the Independent art space festival Beijing. She is currently writing her PHD on the function of urban media in China’s early rural-urban transformation processes. Her research is part of the research project “Social Worlds: China’s cities as spaces of worldmaking” at the University of Würzburg.