The Rise of Modernity: First- Gen Chinese Architects from Upenn
August 18 – October 14, 2018 Power Station of Art, Shanghai
The emergence of industrialization and urbanization happened in Shanghai in the early 20th century, triggering citizens’ dual needs for practical and aesthetically pleasing architecture. The era was also a historical turning point for China’s “first-generation architects” (roughly 20 prominent trailblazers including Zhu Bin, Fan Wenzhao and Liang Sicheng) who studied at the University of Pennsylvania and then returned to China to become the backbone of modern architectural design and urban construction in the country.
The exhibition features two parts. The first section focuses on contributions in architectural practice including educational systems, academic journals and urban planning of the “first-generation architects.” The second part analyzes local public and residential projects: Shanghai Theater, Majestic Theater and more. Through each single case, the study illuminates the intricate interactions between individual, city and the times.
A drawing of the Majestic Theatre by Fan Wenzhao, 1941.
Evolution of the General Appearance of Timber-framed Halls by Liang Sicheng in the 1930s.
A design sketch of wooden mantels and fireplaces by Tong Jun, 1925.