After a particularly smooth and efficient bus journey we arrived in Tianzifang. Part of Taikang Road, Tianzifang is a traditional alley, originally constructed in the 1930s with shikumen residential houses. In 1998 the road was just a small street hidden in Dapuqiao District used as a street market. In September 1998 the local government started the project “Special Streets Construction”, which brought a new life to the road. We wandered the quaint streets taking diverse snaps from street stalls, shop windows, cluttered antiques, street food to elegant architectural features or dilapidated shop facades.
Next stop on the BISS Art bus was the Bund. Before the 1840s, the Bund was a muddy narrow lane with tall reeds. It initially became a British settlement. After Shanghai was established as the trading port in 1846, a street was paved there and the riversides were reinforced. Then, rows of commercial buildings were constructed. As the UK Concession, a building boom at the end of 19th century and beginning of 20th century led to the Bund becoming a major financial hub of East Asia. It was the centre of the city's politics, economy and culture more than a hundred years ago, consulates of most countries and many banks, businesses and newspaper offices were settled there, and that's why we have these art-like buildings. We took in the beautiful and clear view of the Pearl Tower and Pudong focussing on the contrast between the old and new architectural constructions...and a little people watching of course!!
Final stop 1933 Located in the historic Hongkou District, 1933 Shanghai (上海1933老场坊) was built amidst the vibrant urban landscape of pre-communist Shanghai. Designed originally by British architects, and built in 1933 by Chinese developers, the building was originally intended for use as a slaughterhouse but served a number of purposes over the years from medicine factory, cold storage facility, to its current incarnation as a ‘commercial hub for creative industries’. And this is the last one left such built out of 3, one in London and one in US, but they are demolished by now.
We loved the space and even went into the nearby neighbourhood where we made some local friends and Miss Selden nearly bought home this cutie!
A fabulous day had by all and lots of inspiration for our artists!
Rhian Dixon, Head of Art