Shangh Eye, Expo 2010

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An Architectural Guide to Modern Shanghai
The project has been conceived as an extension of the visual communication network for the “Expo 2010 World Exhibition in Shanghai.”
The city of Shanghai is the birthplace of modern China. The architecture of modern Shanghai is a prime example of both: it is a means, but also an expression of social renewal and social transformation in China.

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The project’s main idea is to enable the viewer to experience spatial and temporal processes in a new, interactive way. The information about architecture should not be subjected to quality review, but should display architectural production in terms of its processuality.
The pace of change in our cities in China has reached a new “benchmark.”
While in Europe’s traditional large cities the transition remains visible because a sufficient number of familiar clues remain, the rapid development of China’s megacities is often lost in the lack of their relativity.

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The project “Shang_eye” is now to create an artificial “anchor” that will make the transformation more visible. The objects are to be used as urban furniture along the famous Bund promenade along the Huangpu River in Shanghai.
They offer selected views of the new city center Pu Dong [the new Bund] which sprawls across the other bank of the river some hundred yards away.
The specific conical shape of the objects makes possible for one single “moment” to become framed and focused in time and space. In addition, the cones contain general information about the city and the buildings viewed. The information in printed form is available inside the objects, but outside the objects touch screens are available.

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The cones are to be supplied with energy using photovoltaic mats.
They are made of steel, the outside is painted ruby red, the interior is in silver, polished, and mirrored. As diverse as these forms may look like, they are all deformable surfaces that are easy to produce. They are mounted on the existing parapets using steel sections.
The project is inspired by the principle of ‘framing the view,” one of the fundamental principles of the traditional Chinese garden art and landscaping. The older concept of Feng Shui is Kan Yu, an abbreviation for the phrase “to watch the heaven and the earth.”
The large scale of the open space design symbolizes the free flow of Qi.
As one of the details, the mirrored inner surface of the object places the observer himself into the center of the action, helping him recognize himself as a living opposite to an ever-changing urban landscape.

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