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April 2015
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Arty Shanghai: its unrestrained artistic side!

Arty Shanghai © Ludovic Bischoff

In all its forms, art is the latest fad to makes its fortune in China. Chinese artists are becoming more and more popular. And a city as cosmopolitan as Shanghai could never escape the arty madness that has taken hold of China. It is the Moganshan district that houses the largest number of art galleries. And it is also there that you may find a vast array of walls serving as canvases to street artists. You could almost say that you have to pass by these graffitied surfaces to unearth M50, the largest complex of galleries. At the start, these former textile warehouses were squatted in by artists. And at the start of the 21st century, it is here that they reside in perfect, expansive and clear studios. Officially dubbed a “creative industry park” and named by the Chinese authorities, M50 today is more of a reorganisation of galleries roamed by chichi expats and rich Chinese. Thus, these artists are more often found in dusty workshops than whitewash galleries slightly further into the immense Shanghai suburbs. M50 has without a doubt lost a little of its authenticity in the eyes of those who ventured there ten years ago. The gentrification that strikes wherever trends establish themselves has also invaded here. But M50 remains an unmissable part of the Shanghai experience. And if your budget forbids you from purchasing a several million Yuan painting, swing over to bohemian hub Tiangzifang. These alleyways have been colonised in an anarchic manner by hundreds of boutiques. Local designers rub shoulders with affordable bars and restaurants, which are always buzzing. The perfect place to discover several “made in China” trifles – far from the usual junk!

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