696 Weihei Lu - again

Maleonn in his soon-to-be-demolished studio. Picture: Oriental Morning Post Good to see some Chinese coverage of the distressing and imminent demolition of the 696 Weihai Lu studio complex. The all-seeing ShanghaiEye links to no fewer than five articles published in yesterday's ???? Dongfang Zaobao (Oriental Morning Post), pointing out the absurdity of turning the already highly creative space into a gentrified, pricier and therefore prohibitive 'Creative Zone'. Shanghai-based writer Lisa Movius wrote a very informative and insightful piece on the goings-on at the doomed arts hub for the Wall Street Journal recently, in which she notes "696 Weihai, the only creative district in downtown Shanghai that is not controlled by the government, is one of two big artists' communes in the city. The other, 50 Moganshan Rd... is owned by the Shanghai Textile Group, a state-owned enterprise. But successive rent increases at M50...have driven out small galleries and all but the most successful artists. Commercial art shops and offices have taken their place. Other so-called "creative industry clusters" have been built in old factories by ShangTex or other state-owned enterprise landlords, but rents are priced beyond the means of most artists." It's utterly maddening - whilst any last minute reprieve seems increasingly unlikely, one thing that I urge you to do is go visit... soon! stageBACK are still showing their wonderful WELTSCHMERZ show. Go, and whilst you're there, take a wander around the labyrinth that is 696 Weihai Lu.