A Beautiful Country Trilogy
Architecture Model

A Fairytale of A Fishing Village

This project is the model of the third episode of “A Beautiful Country” trilogy, “Empty,” which consists of an animation and a model. The project is based on studying empty container rates in international shipping. We imagine a city made of huge ships from foundry factories, an abandoned industrial tomb, and the wreckage of a Leviathan. This Leviathan is the economical solution and way of survival in the age of globalization: a mobile foundry (an inescapable prison at sea). It organizes human production and life in five spherical air silos (circular prisons), overlapping labor and transportation time to maximize capital efficiency. It is our way of life, from which no one can escape. Floating on the high seas, the ship as a corporate body is not subject to regulation by any sovereign state. Neither does the ship possess property on fixed land nor has it to pay taxes or assume the labor insurance of its crew. It loads labor and components in China and then sails to the U.S., a voyage during which the products will be assembled. Labor time is overlapped with shipping time to increase productivity. On the way back, the ship carries the air mentioned in the first episode of the trilogy back to China as a commodity. The free market reduces qualitative differences to quantitative ones through the price mechanism. Like the container revolution, it impels the standardization process to unfold in various dimensions, including urban space. The work uses the ship as a spatial metaphor for globalization to depict an ecology that fails to self-supply in the global context and an ineffective utopia that relies on mega-infrastructure to trade its right to life. Such utopia is the projection of the alienated realities and our belief in extreme modernism.

Project Information Project Type: Model Project Location: Shenzhen Dimension: 180 x 66 x 40 cm Commission: 2017 Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism / Architecture, 2018 Infrastructural Territory: The Spatial Foundation of National Discourse, 2018 Hyundai Motorstuidio: The Precariousness.

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