The exhibition Espace & Temps transforms the “white box” of the museum into a “space connecting times,” from which emerges a dialogue on Chinese and French architecture that crosses space and time, presenting the works of outstanding young French architects and Chinese traditional architecture forms to examine what they share in common and the ways in which they differ.
The French segment of the exhibition features works by twenty award-winning young architects and landscape designers from the 2016 AJAP | Les Albums des Jeunes Architectes et des Paysagistes, and invites three studios to present their innovative designs fusing new technology and public environmental awareness into the built environment.
AJAP | Les Albums des Jeunes Architectes et des Paysagistes has become a major event in the French architecture scene since it was first held in 2005, working closely with the Institut Français. The event is held twice a year with support from the French Ministry of Culture and Communication. The Institut Français assists with exhibitions of award-winners from each installment of the event in order to promote a new generation of French architects and landscape designers around the world.
The Chinese side of this dialogue consists of four segments. This includes works by He Cheng, Ma Xinlin and Li Gang, three architects based in Jianshui, Yunnan Province, who are working to restore the traditional architecture and way of life of this ancient town. The exhibition presents the courtyards, community areas and landscaped gardens they have created.
The exhibition also presents the multi-year research work on traditional architecture in Jianshui and the surrounding region by He Junping, a famous historian of Chinese architecture, preservationist and professor at the Kunming University of Science and Technology Institute for Architecture and Urban Planning.
The exhibition also features Lin Deyang and Shen Rong’an, traditional carpenters from Tonghai County, Yunnan Province. Over the exhibition’s two month duration, they constructed a complete traditional wooden structure within the exhibition space, and demonstrated the process and crafting behind the bracket and the mortise and tenon joints, basic elements of Chinese architecture, and the various rituals involved in traditional Chinese construction. In addition, the exhibition presents artistic interpretations of Yunnanese architectural design by video artist Gao Yulin and photographer Wang Pengfei.
To add to the courtyard atmosphere of the China segment, the curators invited famous floral designer Duan Yiheng to present a floral arrangement performance onsite.