Tag: 北京 展览 |
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“Place by Displacement” exhibiting with the group show, Mapgames in Beijing, Birmingham, UK and Terni, Italy  Summer 2008

The rapid urbanization and globalization sweeping China today has transformed the city map from static to dynamic. While the map of less prominent cities may be transformed beyond recognition, the map of Beijing retains much of its original character because of the city’s awareness for historic preservation.  While international influences transform and displace its urban fabric, Beijing’s rooted historic past plays a role in resisting elemental change.  The purpose of this “map game” is to test how the Beijing city map has mutated and will continue to do so while maintaining its own identity.

A large irregular shaped map approximately 2m by 2m of central Beijing within the second ring will be divided into many square 20cm by 20cm game pieces.  Each game piece is a stack of map squares on a tear-away pad.  Most of the sheets in the stack will be identical pieces of the current Google Earth satellite image of Beijing.  Other urban fabrics (in this case, Manhattan’s) of the same scale will be inserted randomly throughout the stack.  Historical map of the same location in Beijing will also be inserted in the stack.  All the game pieces will be mounted directly on to the wall.  At the opening of the exhibition, the game pieces will compose a complete map of Beijing.  Throughout the exhibition, participants are invited to tear away any square of their choosing, then discard the square to a trashcan placed near the installation. As more people participate, the map will change; Manhattan’s urban fabric will appear and disappear around the map throughout the game, but the map will remain undeniably Beijing.  Photographs will record the possibilities that occur during the game and will be displayed with the game at the next leg of the exhibition.

Through participation of this “map game,” visitors will experience the realities of Beijing’s frenetic changes.  As visitors make their own changes, they begin to visualize the endless possibilities of Beijing’s future.  No matter how many layers Beijing sheds as it grows to compete in the era of globalization, the city’s history is inevitably ingrained in its character.  Beijing’s powerful ability to adapt will never compromise its iconic identity.

Tags: 北京 展览

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