Your Guide to the Best of the 2016 Beijing Design Week

By Oscar Holland, September 28, 2016

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Beijing Design Week (BJDW) is back with its usual packed schedule of talks, exhibitions, installments and more. It's already well underway, but the name Design Week is misleading – much of it stretches well into October. So here’s our pick of this year’s most promising events and areas that will be transformed over the next few weeks. There’s more happening than we could realistically hope to include, so check out www.bjdw.org for the full rundown. 

Baitasi

One of the new ‘design hop’ areas unveiled at last year’s Design Week, the tranquil Baitasi (White Pagoda Temple) stretches over 37 hectares of hutongs and offers a pleasant respite from the bustle of nearby Financial Street. This year, the Baitasi Remade project will focus on the theme ‘Urban Learning & The Future of Sharing,’ through a variety of on-site installations and exhibitions. Until October 7.

Dashilar

If you’ve taken part in previous Design Weeks, you’ll know all about the work that happens at Dashilar. Nonetheless, our best-of guide wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the event’s showpiece area. Once again, the legendary hutongs near Qianmen will host pop-ups and installations in spaces that fuse the area’s history with visions of contemporary living. Until October 7.

751 D-Park

Each year, BJDW selects a partner guest city, and this time it’s Seoul. Future collaboration between the Chinese and Korean capitals will run deeper than the average punter gets to see, but get a taster at 751 D-Park where Seoul Design Consortium is putting on activities across four different spaces under the theme of ‘Seoul: smart city, smart design and smart life.’ Until October 6.

Beijing Media Art Biennale

Organized in collaboration with the Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA), the biennale’s focus on ‘Ethics of Technology’ reflects on technological morality through exhibitions, research, forums, panel discussions, public screens and more. Among those involved is renowned Australian performance artist Stelarc, who famously once had an ear (not his) surgically attached onto his own arm. For the full program, visit www.bmab.co. Until October 30.

TKL Light Festival 

Ten light installations from around the world – including works titled ‘LED Carpet,’ ‘The Unfettered Language of Machines,’ ‘Listening Bamboo,’ and ‘Light Battle’ ¬– will be placed in various locations across Taikoo Li in Sanlitun. Some are interactive – and some less so. But all are guaranteed to liven up your shopping experience. Until October 16.

Lisa Roet’s Snub-Nosed Monkey

Make sure you swing by the Opposite House hotel this month, where you’ll find a giant (well, 30 meters, anyway) inflatable sneezing snub-nosed monkey. The creation, by interdisciplinary artist Lisa Roet, will be scaling the building’s facade. That’s probably all you need to know. Until October 7.

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