Baiziwan in Beijing
After 798, Songzhuang and Caochangdi, a new art district is in the making. Roughly a kilometer north of Shuangjing, and South of the Tonghui River stands Baiziwan Lu, an ill-paved road cutting between smelly car repair shops on one side, and fancy apartment buildings under construction on the other. The contrast could not be more apparent, if it wasn’t for an odd building – Tate Modern meets the Village – at number 32.
The Today Art Museum towers as the epicenter of a new district in the making for Beijingers who can’t get enough of contemporary art. The compound, called Pingod, is still half vacant. Like in many such areas in Beijing, first comes the idea, then the money, last the people – or in this case, the art. Walking around Baiziwan Lu you get an eerie feeling that all is in place, yet it will take some time to make it a whole. In the meantime, it is still worth to check out the outstanding precursor of what will hopefully be a densely populated, artistic compound.
Today Art Museum 今日美术馆
No doubt this is the gravitational centre of the Baiziwan Lu district. Pictures of its post industrial facade, designed by artists Wang Jianwei and Wang Hui, are the poster image of Chinese art development in the city. Yue Minjun’s enigmatic statues on the front lawn add to its contemporary appeal. The museum spans four floors of exhibition space – a total of 4,000 square meters of contemporary art. Attached is a café and a creative club. The museum also sponsors loads of activities from kids workshops to arts seminars.
Address: Building 4, Pingod Community, 32 Baiziwan Lu, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Tel: 010 5876 0600
Price: 10-20 RMB
Opening hours: 10:00 – 17:00 (No entry after 16:00)
Dialogue Space 对画空间
Open since 2008, the gallery is a two storey, 600 square meter large gem. It is located behind the Today Art Museum and compensates for its visibly smaller space with style. The gallery hosts 8 to 10 exhibitions a year, inviting the most well known names of the new generation of Chinese artists, as well as foreign artists. The friendly staff is a pleasant addition.
Address: 22 International Art Plaza, No.32 Baiziwan Lu, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Tel: 010 5876 0226
Opening hours: Tue-Sun, 10:00 – 18:00
East Station Gallery 东站画廊
Dong Zhan Gallery kicked off in Baiziwan Lu on March 2009 with a memorable exhibition called “China’s revision”, featuring some of the most prominent names of Chinese contemporary art. A cage marks the entrance to the gallery, which is then divided into three exhibition spaces. This is the second biggest gallery in the area after the Today Art Museum, and its art is definitely worth a visit.
Address: 9#, 1st Building, 32 Baiziwan Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Hours: Tue-Sun, 10:00-18:00
Contact: 010 58769741
Beauty Tao Art Center 海南美丽道艺术中心
This space is a branch of a Hainan based operation, which opened in Beijing in December 2010. There are two floors of art, and the venue displays a rather serious atmosphere.
Address: 32 Baiziwan Lu, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Opening hours: 10:00 – 18:00
Tel: 010 5826 3255