Delirious Shanghai

Thoughts on China 2010-2013

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    Voyage to the Orient!

    Evan Chakroff
    Oct 8, '11 12:42 AM EST

    CHINA ARCHITECTURE TOUR: December 6 - 22, 2011
    two week whirlwind tour of traditional, colonial, and contemporary architecture in China!

    (Sorry to post this - essentially an ad - here, but I see no better way to drum up interest and get more people involved...)

    This coming December I will be organizing an architectural tour up the East China Coast, hitting all major cities from Hong Kong to Shanghai, then traveling north to Beijing. This will be an intense, whirlwind tour - over ten cities in just 16 days - but we will see a HUGE amount; it will be an incredible experience, (and one that would be impossible to organize on your own). (The trip is open to anyone, but preference will be given to practicing architects and architecture students. The trip will be associated with the Ohio State University, and the program fee will count for AIA continuing education credit, and be tax-deductible).

    In addition to the trip, we will be writing and constructing a guidebook to the architecture of the east China coast. This will include detailed building information, map locations, and a collection of essays on architecture and urbanism in China, a collaborative project by participants on the trip. As far as I know there is no trip like this, and no guidebook like this available at present.

    This trip is coming up very soon, and space it limited, so please email me - Evan Chakroff ( with any questions, to see the detailed schedule, or to arrange payment and confirmation. The program fee will be around $1600 USD, which includes all ground transportation, hotels, admission fees, and some group meals. This does not include your transportation to Hong Kong, or from Beijing, or visa fees....)


    This is going to be great. Let me know if you're interested, A.S.A.P.


    Rough itinerary:


    SHENZHEN (Including 2011 Hong Kong - Shenzhen Architecture Bienale)



    • LITS4FormZ

      Sounds like a great trip! I hope people take advantage of this amazing opportunity. 

      Oct 8, 11 5:10 pm  · 

      "voyage to the orient" I find the title a little pejorative.  good luck with the trip. 

      Oct 9, 11 10:37 pm  · 

      is it offensive? (outdated, sure - but that's half the point: "Trip to China" doesn't have the same retro swagger.)

      my apologies.

      Oct 10, 11 12:58 am  · 

      A few years ago we designed a book for Henry Yu (brother of late, great architect George Yu) titled: Thinking Orientals; Migration, Contact, and Exoticism in Modern America. We were a little surprised by the title. Apparently the terms "orient" or "orientals" are not considered derogatory.

      Oct 10, 11 1:04 am  · 

      Sounds like a fantastic trip- Xiamen and Yongding are extraordinary, especially the colonial aspects of Xiamen- I wish I had more time to see it. I guess you are going to see the weirdness of 'Piano Island?'

      Oct 10, 11 11:06 am  · 

      I spent a good half-hour reading up on whether or not "Orient" or "Oriental" are considered derogatory.... (jury's still out, apparently, but it seems that the controversy only exists in American English, the rest of the world seems generally OK with the terms...) Anyway, no harm meant by the title.

      As for Xiamen - part of the academic program of the trip will be to visit four of the five post-1842 "treaty ports" - those cities, like Shanghai, with a tradition of eclectic, Euro-american-influenced architecture. I've been to a few already, and it's fascinating to compare the cities (Shanghai and Ningbo both have a "Bund" for instance, but the scale is radically different, as is the preservation/restoration approach....). Gulanyu "Piano" Island sounds fascinating - both for the colonial villas and for the fact that it's one of the few places in China that's banned automobiles.... And of course around Xiamen (in Yongding and further south) there are the Unesco-stamped "Tulou" roundhouses, which just look amazing.... hopefully we'll find a way to stay overnight in one (though, as always in China, I'm a little worried about these things being overrun with tourist groups....)


      if anyone is at all interested in joining the trip, please email me soon - the bus is filling up quick!


      Oct 10, 11 11:41 am  · 

      it's true, I guess it's a matter of interpretation. regardless the trip sounds like it will be some kind of  fantastic voyage. 


      Oct 10, 11 9:45 pm  · 

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