Power, Economics, and Urban Forms: How Hong Kong Helped Shape Beijing and the Contemporary Chinese City
Date: 24 November 2015 (Tuesday)
Time: 19:00 - 20:30
Venue: agnès b. CINEMA (Hong Kong Arts Centre, 2 Harbour Road, Wan Chai, Hong Kong)
Moderator: Cole Roskam, Assistant Professor, Department of Architecture, The University of Hong Kong
Panel Discussants: Remo Riva, Director, P&T Group; Tang Keyang, Associate Professor, School of Arts, Renmin University of China
Given that cities are arguably the most explicit manifestation of power relationships, the contemporary Chinese city can be conceptualised according to two extreme logics: one driven primarily by political power, as exemplified through the urban forms of Beijing, and the other propelled by economic power, as in Hong Kong. The dialectics between Hong Kong and Beijing—between the economic and the political—introduce archetypal tensions that will appear and reappear in the contemporary Chinese city in ever-newer incarnations.
Concluding his six-month term as the inaugural M+ / Design Trust Research Fellow, Ling Fan will present ‘Hong Kong as an Urban Archetype for China’s Marketisation’, an examination of this phenomenon focused on two 1990s case studies in Beijing: Oriental Plaza and Sun Dong An Plaza (now Beijing apm). Both projects were funded through investments by Hong Kong-based developers (Cheung Kong Property and Sun Hung Kai Properties, respectively) and relied on the commercial design expertise of Hong Kong architects (P&T Group, formerly Palmer and Turner, and Wong Tung & Partners). In exploring the flow of capital and architectural strategies from Hong Kong to Beijing, Fan will propose the beginnings of a theoretical framework for understanding Hong Kong’s instrumental role in shaping the Chinese city in the post-reform era.
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