Eating My Way Through China No. 11 // “The Good...
One of our favorite places to go for lunch in Caochangdi is a place that we refer to affectionately as “The Good Place.” Being that characters still seem foreign to us weeks after arrival, we recognize the restaurant by the “Shaxian delicacies” banner and the apple shaped sign on the door that notes they are open. Since the menu lacked photos or English, we first had to resort to ordering...
Research No. 4 // Tiancun
“There is no construction without destruction” – Mao Zedong Mao’s quote may seem brutal, but in many ways it is the reality of modernization in China. At each research site we have visited there has been sacrifice for the sake of the nation’s aspirations. Whether it is the destruction of the urban villages around Beijing, replacement of farmland, or the bulldozing of previous infrastructure...
TIME // China's New Parochialism →
Eating My Way Through China No. 10 // Burning...
Week 4 / 6.3.2011 / Lamb on the Spit Lamb, Homemade Hummus + Pita Week 5 / 6.10.2011 / Mexican Tacos with all the typical “gringo” fixings on Corn + Flour Tortillas Pico de Gallo Hot Chinese Chili Salsa Week 8 / 6.24.2011 / Crayfish Boil The traditional New Orleans culinary event held in Caochangdi. My New Orleanian family members would be proud. Week 9 / 7.2.2011 / Lamb Chops Lamb + Salad...
NYTimes // Building Boom in China Stirs Fears of... →
Eating [+ Drinking] My Way Through China No. 9 //...
So, I would be remiss if I did not talk about the local “adult” beverages at some point during the gastronomy feature on this blog. I definitely think enjoying a local spirit or fermented liquid is part of learning about a culture. Since beer is as cheap as water here, and it almost tastes like it too, it accompanies most meals. At the same time, the beer is pretty homogenous. It is rather...
NYTimes // Koolhaas, Delirious in Beijing →
Observing China No.2: Chinese Cultural Norms
I have been thoroughly enjoying my time in China, but every once in a while the idiosyncrasies of Chinese culture here trend far past being simply bizarre. These are the situations that unfortunately push us all into “stage two” from time to time [our intra-program colloquial term for the loss of the excitement and desire that comes from being in a foreign place]. My personal Chinese Hit List...
NPR // Explore China's Global Reach →
Visualization of where all the yuans are flowing.
TIME // China's Mining Pit →
The effect of China’s rapid urbanization will be felt around the world, even in developed countries where we might not expect the impact to be as pronounced.
Songzhuang + The Case of the Moving Building
As part of our continuing work learning about Chinese Contemporary Art, Zhang Fang took us to visit the Songzhuang Artist Village. On the far east side of Beijing, this farming village has been emerging as the desired location for artist studio spaces and more recently galleries to show their work. Songzhuang differs from Caochangdi in the way that artists are literally constructing this village...
NYTimes // High-Speed Rail Poised to Alter China →
“Even at the initial speeds, they will take less than five hours to cover a distance comparable to New York to Atlanta — which requires nearly 18 hours on Amtrak.”
Research No. 3 // Chateau Laffitte
Every great city needs a place to get away from the noise and congestion of urban life, especially with the levels of smog here. In Beijing, most would flee to the Great Wall’s scenic mountains just north of town. Now, the nouveau riche Beijingers are instead picking up a set of golf clubs and making their way to a resort like Chateau Laffitte. Upon returning from our research visit,...
Wang Qingsong // Follow Me
Follow Me, 120x300cm  Wang Qingsong is one of the local Caochangdi artists that we have had the opportunity to meet while in China. The contemporary art scene in China is very young and Wang is considered by most to be at the forefront of this movement. We had the opportunity to tour Wang’s home a few weeks back and see work in progress and prints of many of his previous works. For me...