Gerkan: This idea of only wanting to work for private individuals is absurd. In a country like China, where does private end and where does government-owned begin? Private citizens turn out to be aligned with the government, or a private developer obtains government financing for his building. For architects like us, this is almost impossible to figure out. Many of those who criticize us are building the five-hundredth high-rise building in China and claim to have integrity. This is a fallacy. — Spiegel
Within two days of the opening of the first exhibition at the newly renovated National Museum of China, Chinese artist Ai Weiwei was arrested at the Beijing airport. Der Spiegel recently spoke with Meinhard von Gerkan of the renowned architecture firm gmp in Hamburg, who designed the renovations. Their discussion focuses on the morality of building in modern China. Particularly for a project wherein the government is patron and the site is as historic and politicized as Tiananmen Square.