Architectures of Displacement – Guangzhou, China

Aitken, John van orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-7261-1332 and Brake, Jane (2017) Architectures of Displacement – Guangzhou, China. [Show/Exhibition]

[thumbnail of A Walk in Xian Village slideshow showcased at Tate Liverpool] Other (A Walk in Xian Village slideshow showcased at Tate Liverpool)
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As part of LOOK 17 Photography Festival, the Institute of Urban Dreaming (IUD) organised an interactive installation and a number of public talks exploring the current gentrification of domestic landscapes in China at the Tate Liverpool’s Exchange Space The installation drew on our extensive fieldwork of domestic sites undergoing change in Guangzhou; presenting a range of videos, research materials and photographs for the public to engage with. The work is part of IUD’s ongoing witnessing of the dispossession and displacement produced by contemporary strategies of capital accumulation used by corporations / governments centred on domestic housing.

The interactive installation was also accompanied by two free public events that hosted a range of talks by academics, practitioners and activists. The events aimed at interrogating the processes behind the current phase of Chinese ‘hyper-urbanization’. These speakers included: Dr Paul Waley, School of Geography, University of Leeds, Dr Paul Watt, Department of Geography, Birkbeck, University of London, Marianna Tsionkis, Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art, Dr Eugenie Shinkle, University of Westminster, Professor Loretta Lees, University of Leicester and ourselves, amongst others.

The range of speakers for both events examined the socio-political consequences of this urbanization and its representation in visual media. Part of our research is to bring different knowledge disciplines and creative practices into dialogue and foster such interdisciplinary discussions. The second event linked to the host city by bringing in activists from the North Docks Community Group to discuss these issues in relation to Liverpool’s current stage of proposed urban changes. The event and recordings of the talks are publicly available on:

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