Shanghai Streetscape

Shanghai Streetscape

By Héloïse Le Carrer & Mathilde Planchot (France)

Curator: Ni Minqing

Shanghai Streetscape is an installation project which aims to grasp the ambiance of the street for an instant: life, people, their everyday lives, an ordinary, a component of the identity of the city. Weobserve a singular atmosphere which comes with a series of streetscape, thus creating an imation and an atmosphere of happy mess, end up being the active space of the city.

Different situations of Shanghai street stories are expressed by a series of models,their shadows, and a sound track. The models are set up individually at eyelevel to allow the visitor to become closer and discover the details of the scene. Each physical model comprises a grey brick, small figures and furniture.The enlarged shadows of the small model mingle with the shadows of visitors. It creates a bi-dimensional representation of the street, a recomposed landscape,highlighting the daily life and street memory which people don’t pay attention of.  

Uses in the city

Series of drawings, 2011.


Commissioned by Open Your Space: Design Interventionin Siping District, curated by Ni Minqing

An atmosphere of happy mess

In Shanghai, we observe this singular atmosphere which comes with aseries of small shops and workshops. Hairdresser, tailor, joiner are assortedwith restaurants and tea, fruit, egg seller. These small shops are spreadingout onto the pavement, thus creating animation and an atmosphere of happy mess.Shanghai Streetscape is about life, people, their everyday lives, anordinary : a component of the cultural identity of the city. Theinhabitant and the passerby appropriate the space of the street and the pavement.The public space becomes spontaneously and non-regulated : a living room,a playing area, a market, a garden. Life is present from morning to evening.

A survey of uses et practices

Shanghai Streetscape is an inventory. In a format of a scientificsurvey, Shanghai Streetscape identifies multiple uses and practices whichexpose themself within public space. The physical model, the photographicpanorama, the sound section, «commentated route» form a group of diversetools ; an objective to broadcast via different media the atmospheres andambiances inherent of the street.

A life snapshot

Shanghai Streetscape is a snapshot : to capture a moment and atmosphere of what is characterising  life in a portion of this street. It is thewitness of an urban fabric under transformation, where old lilongs and newcompounds juxtapose each other.  LikeShanghai, Jiashan Lu is a collage of uses, typologies and eras. The purpose isto grasp an atmosphere of this street for an instant, given the currenteconomic pressures on the land and its subsequent rapid transformation.

A look on the landscape passerby

Shanghai Streetscape is a contemplation on the city, the street, thelandscape of the passerby, and the inhabitant. Indeed, the city is observed andthought at every scale.  Like traditionalChinese paintings, the street rolls out like a landscape that we observe fromthe distance, like the line which represents it on a urban plan. As you getcloser, the street gets more detailed, the inhabitant and the passerby unveilthemselves in their daily life. From then on, they appear at the heart of urbanquestions related pavement and ground floor typologies. The ground floor,associated with the small shops format, end up being the active space of thecity. Small shops, thanks to their small dimensions, rhythm and sequences fillthe street with life: create urbanity.

Heloise Le Carrer and Mathilde Planchot are architects. They carry out projects together within Ditu studio:

To live abroad and confront yourself with the unknown has lead us to reconsider the obviousness, the acknowledge, commonplace. Our reflection deals with open topics originating from encounters with individuals or the from the observation of daily life. We strive to consider architecture through the view of the user by drawing on imaginary while investigate on the real.

Exhibition Duration : 10July 2016 – 17 July 2016, 10am-6pm

Address: SPace, No. 115Tieling Road, Yangpu District, Shanghai


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