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Serpentine Galleries and WF CENTRAL Announce First International Serpentine Pavilion in Beijing

Jiakun Architects to design inaugural co-commission

BEIJING, Feb. 1, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- WF CENTRAL and the Serpentine Galleries (London) today announced a major international collaboration and the commissioning of a new architecture Pavilion at WF CENTRAL Beijing, designed by JIAKUN Architects.

Modelled on the internationally acclaimed Serpentine annual Pavilion Commission in London's Royal Park of Kensington Gardens, the inaugural Serpentine Pavilion Beijing, set to open in May 2018, will form the architectural centerpiece of the spacious 690 sq. m. outdoor lawns of The Green at WF CENTRAL and will be the focal point for a range of cultural activities, events and social encounters.

Eminent Chinese architectural practice JIAKUN Architects, led by renowned architect Liu Jiakun, has responded to the brief of designing a world-class temporary Pavilion that takes into consideration both the historical and social context of Beijing and the 18-year history of the Serpentine Pavilion Commission. Initiated in 2000, the Serpentine Pavilion London scheme has showcased the work of internationally recognized architects from the late Zaha Hadid to Rem Koolhaas. Last summer, the critically acclaimed 2017 Serpentine Pavilion commission showcased the work of the award-winning architect Francis Kere.

A selection committee of eight selected the JIAKUN Architect's design, including Hans Ulrich Obrist, artistic director, and Yana Peel, CEO, of Serpentine Galleries; architect Sir David Adjaye, trustee of the Serpentine Galleries; David Glover, CEO of Intelligent Engineering and technical advisor to the Serpentine; Raymond Chow Executive Director and James Robinson former Executive Director of Hongkong Land; artist Wang Jianwei; and Philip Dodd, director of Made in China.

"WF CENTRAL aims to engage, connect and build community through a considered curation of art and cultural creativity and experiential lifestyle," said Mr. Raymond Chow, Executive Director of Hongkong Land. "The Serpentine Pavilion Beijing commission represents a unique cultural association between WF CENTRAL and the Serpentine Galleries. We believe that this marks the beginning of a partnership that has the potential to unfold in various ways and that is founded on a shared passion for architecture and design."

"This exciting collaboration marks the first Pavilion co-commissioned and built by the Serpentine outside the UK," explained Mr Hans Ulrich Obrist, Artistic Director of the Serpentine Galleries. Ms. Yana Peel, CEO said: "We are delighted at this opportunity to share the architectural creativity and sense of community of our annual London Pavilion experience with new audiences in China."

With a focus on society, community and a respect for local context and vernacular craftsmenship, Liu Jiakun aims to address contemporary architectural issues with a sense of realism, an approach inspired by folk wisdom. His vision remains open to China's many traditions and his projects shed light on the reciprocal relation between Chinese public life and urban cultural space.

JIAKUN Architects' Beijing Pavilion takes inspiration from Confucianism with an architecture that is a physical representation of the traditional pursuit of Junzi. The design is characterised by the figure of the archer, in the form of a curved cantilever beam that incorporates the forces of elasticity through cables stretched between steel plates. Although modern architecture in Beijing has developed a series of powerful techniques to fight the external forces of fierce winds and unpredictable earthquakes, the Pavilion's integral structure aims -- like a Tai Chi master -- to conquer the harshness of those forces with softness.

"Our design for the Serpentine Pavilion Beijing incorporates the forces of elasticity through a series of cables stretched between steel plates," explained Mr. Liu Jiakun. "The architecture of the inaugural Beijing Pavilion is the physical representation of the pursuit of Junzi. What we ultimately want to present is a spatial installation that goes beyond mere function to push the boundaries of contemporary architectural practice." 

The inaugural Beijing Pavilion will be in place at WF CENTRAL for approximately six months. At the core of the Serpentine's Pavilion programme are the cultural activities programmed within the structure -- a 'social architecture' that allows visitors to engage with the space in various ways. The Serpentine Pavilion Beijing's programme will be announced closer to the official opening of the project.

WF CENTRAL is a premium lifestyle retail destination, a world-class, 150,000 sq. m. retail, fine dining and hospitality hub in Wangfujing, in the centre of Dongcheng District, Beijing. It sets a new benchmark for retail and lifestyle through its FIVE Core categories. Each category offers unmatched experiences namely: Luxury; Fashion; World-class Gastronomy; Lifestyle & Wellness; and Art & Culture.

To discover more about WF CENTRAL and to receive our latest news and information on upcoming events, follow us on our Sina Weibo account and our WeChat account at "WF CENTRAL".

Please download the hi-res images at:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/g7ehdpixpueesgs/AACZ5gNqQLAZUTevl7lyBxn-a?dl=0

WF CENTRAL is Hongkong Land’s leading premium lifestyle retail destination in Beijing, China. It offers an authentically-new Beijing lifestyle experience by bringing together an unparalleled range of Luxury, Fashion, Lifestyle & Wellness, World-class Gastronomy and Art & Culture experiences.
WF CENTRAL is Hongkong Land’s leading premium lifestyle retail destination in Beijing, China. It offers an authentically-new Beijing lifestyle experience by bringing together an unparalleled range of Luxury, Fashion, Lifestyle & Wellness, World-class Gastronomy and Art & Culture experiences.

 

Serpentine Galleries has championed new ideas in contemporary art since it opened in 1970. It has presented pioneering exhibitions of work from emerging practitioners to the most internationally recognised artists and architects of our time. (Photo credit: Serpentine Gallery Photograph 2017 John Offenbach; Serpentine Sackler Gallery Photograph 2017 John Offenbach)
Serpentine Galleries has championed new ideas in contemporary art since it opened in 1970. It has presented pioneering exhibitions of work from emerging practitioners to the most internationally recognised artists and architects of our time. (Photo credit: Serpentine Gallery Photograph 2017 John Offenbach; Serpentine Sackler Gallery Photograph 2017 John Offenbach)

 

(Photo 1)From left to right: Mr. Raymond Chow, executive director, Hongkong Land; Ms. Yana Peel, CEO, the Serpentine Galleries; Mr. Liu Jiakun, Principal, JIAKUN Architects; Mr. Hans Obrist, artistic director, the Serpentine Galleries. (Photo 2)From left to right: Mr. Liu Jiakun, Principal, JIAKUN Architects; Mr. Raymond Chow, executive director, Hongkong Land; Ms. Yana Peel, CEO, the Serpentine Galleries; Mr. Hans Obrist, artistic director, the Serpentine Galleries.
(Photo 1)From left to right: Mr. Raymond Chow, executive director, Hongkong Land; Ms. Yana Peel, CEO, the Serpentine Galleries; Mr. Liu Jiakun, Principal, JIAKUN Architects; Mr. Hans Obrist, artistic director, the Serpentine Galleries. (Photo 2)From left to right: Mr. Liu Jiakun, Principal, JIAKUN Architects; Mr. Raymond Chow, executive director, Hongkong Land; Ms. Yana Peel, CEO, the Serpentine Galleries; Mr. Hans Obrist, artistic director, the Serpentine Galleries.

The Serpentine Pavilion Beijing has been designed by JIAKUN Architects. The eminent Chinese architectural practice has responded to the brief of designing a world-class temporary Pavilion that takes into consideration both the historical and social context of Beijing and the 18-year history of the Serpentine Pavilion commission. (Photo credit: Render of the Serpentine Pavilion Beijing 2018, Design by Jiakun Architects Jiakun Architects)
The Serpentine Pavilion Beijing has been designed by JIAKUN Architects. The eminent Chinese architectural practice has responded to the brief of designing a world-class temporary Pavilion that takes into consideration both the historical and social context of Beijing and the 18-year history of the Serpentine Pavilion commission. (Photo credit: Render of the Serpentine Pavilion Beijing 2018, Design by Jiakun Architects Jiakun Architects)

The Serpentine Pavilion Beijing promises to be a stunning architectural focal point this summer. It will form a centerpiece of the outdoor lawns of The Green at WF CENTRAL for a wide range of special cultural activities, events and social encounters.
The Serpentine Pavilion Beijing promises to be a stunning architectural focal point this summer. It will form a centerpiece of the outdoor lawns of The Green at WF CENTRAL for a wide range of special cultural activities, events and social encounters.

WF CENTRAL

WF CENTRAL is Hongkong Land's leading premium lifestyle retail centre in China at the commercial and political heart of the capital city, with the design and scale to both respect and revitalise the historic fabric of the Wangfujing area. Occupying a prime site of approximately 21,000 sq. m. on Wangfujing Street in Dongcheng District, Beijing, WF CENTRAL is bringing the community a total of 150,000 sq. m. gross floor area -- including a 74-room Mandarin Oriental hotel. The property offers 50,000 sq. m. of retail space.

Bringing together an unparalleled range of Luxury, Fashion, World-class Gastronomy, Lifestyle & Wellness, and Art & Culture experiences, WF CENTRAL is set to offer an authentically-new Beijing lifestyle experience by providing the opportunity to find inspiration, enjoy culture and be part of a new global perspective.

Located on the prosperous Wangfujing Street, WF CENTRAL is only a stone's throw away from the Forbidden City and the Central Business District of Beijing. It will provide 660 carpark spaces and is well served by the capital's public transportation and metro networks.

Hongkong Land

Hongkong Land is a listed leading property investment, management and development group. Founded in 1889, Hongkong Land's business is built on excellence, integrity and partnership.

The Group owns and manages approximately 800,000 sq. m. of prime office and luxury retail property in key Asian cities, principally in Hong Kong and Singapore. Hongkong Land's properties attract the world's foremost companies and luxury brands.

Its Hong Kong Central portfolio represents some 450,000 sq. m. of prime property. It has a further 165,000 sq. m. of prestigious office space in Singapore mainly held through joint ventures, and a 50% interest in a leading office complex in Central Jakarta. The Group also has a number of high quality residential, commercial and mixed-use projects under development in cities across Greater China and Southeast Asia, including a luxury retail centre at Wangfujing in Beijing. In Singapore, its subsidiary, MCL Land, is a well-established residential developer.

Hongkong Land Holdings Limited is incorporated in Bermuda and has a standard listing on the London Stock Exchange, with secondary listings in Bermuda and Singapore. The Group's assets and investments are managed from Hong Kong by Hongkong Land Limited. Hongkong Land is a member of the Jardine Matheson Group.

Serpentine Galleries

Bridging two sites and multiple worlds in the heart of London's Kensington Gardens, the Serpentine aims to inspire the widest possible audiences with the urgency of art and architecture today. Situated in a classical 1934 tea pavilion, the original Serpentine Gallery is a unique space for modern and contemporary art, which underwent a £4m renovation by John Miller + Partners in 1998, under the patronage of Diana, Princess of Wales. With the opening of the Serpentine Sackler Gallery in 2013, designed by Zaha Hadid Architects, the Serpentine attracts up to 1.2 million visitors a year to its programme of exhibitions, education projects, public programmes, digital commissions and its annual architecture commission.

The Serpentine Pavilion

The Serpentine Pavilion, conceived in 2000, is a watchword for architectural experimentation, presenting the first UK project of some of the world's greatest architects. Each pavilion is sited on the Serpentine Gallery's lawn for four months and the immediacy of the commission -- taking a maximum of six months from invitation to completion -- makes it a unique model worldwide. The pavilion was named the most visited architectural and design exhibition in the world in 2016.

The commissioned architects to date are Kere Architecture, 2017; Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG), 2016 alongside four commissioned Summer Houses designed by Asif Khan, Barkow Leibinger, Yona Friedman, and Kunle Adeyemi; selgascano, 2015; Smiljan Radic, 2014; Sou Fujimoto, 2013; Herzog & Meuron and Ai Weiwei, 2012; Peter Zumthor, 2011; Jean Nouvel, 2010; SANAA, 2009; Frank Gehry, 2008; Olafur Eliasson and Kjetil Thorsen (Snohetta), 2007; Rem Koolhaas and Cecil Balmond with Arup, 2006; Alvaro Siza and Eduardo Souto de Moura with Cecil Balmond and Arup, 2005; MVRDV with Arup, 2004 (unrealised); Oscar Niemeyer, 2003; Toyo Ito and Cecil Balmond with Arup, 2002; Daniel Libeskind with Arup, 2001 and Zaha Hadid, 2000.

About Jiakun Architects

Jiakun Architects was founded by Liu Jiakun in 1999. Since then, Jiakun Architects has organised and participated in numerous international collaborations and exhibitions. As a multidisciplinary office, Jiakun Architects works with clients from across the globe, specialising not only in architectural design, but also large-scale planning, urban design, landscape, interior and product design, and installation art.

Liu Jiakun has exhibited at the 15th International Architecture Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, the 56th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia and many other international exhibitions. His work has featured in architectural magazines including A+U, AV, Area, MADE IN CHINA and Architectural Review. He has been longlisted for domestic and international architectural awards - the Honor Prize of the 7th ARCASIA, Chinese Architecture & Art Prize 2003, Far East Award in Architecture and Architectural Design Award from Architectural Society of China, WAN Civic Award 2017. Liu Jiakun has lectured at MIT, the Royal Academy of Arts, London, Palais de Chaillot in Paris, the Bauhaus in Dessau and many leading Chinese universities.

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