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Laundry becomes art at a new exhibition on Julu Road

May19,2023   /   Shanghai,China

Laundry becomes art at a new exhibition on Julu Road

Colorful bedsheets form a unique view in the Guanghuali neighborhood.

The tradition of open-air drying in Shanghai's longtang (alleyways) has taken on an artistic flair.

The densely packed poles and lines hung with washing used to be a common, yet unique view in Shanghai's old shikumen neighborhoods, due to the cramped living conditions.

Now an exhibition drawing on this classic Shanghai tradition is being presented at Guanghuali.

In 786 Julu Road, Guanghuali is a xinshi lilong (new-style lane house) neighborhood lined with two-floored red-brick houses, which include the former residences of 1930s movie star Hu Die and renowned diplomat Wang Zhengting from the Kuomintang regime.

Now, colorful bedsheets covered with graffiti, painting, and other forms of art are fluttering in the breeze between the red bricks.

3.jpgThere's so much artistry in these bedsheets.

It's a modern interpretation of the traditional practice by 16 artists, including 9 from the US, South Korea and other overseas countries.

With bedsheets as their canvas, they've used their childhood memories and nostalgia as their inspiration. Artist Chen Fenwan looked to her past, fusing traditional Chinese paper-cutting into her work.

The exhibition is set to be held through May 7.

According to the local Jing'ansi Subdistrict, it's hoping to bring the youth closer to the old communities.

About 20 meters away, there's a pop-up project called "Urban Youngsters Life Inspirations Convenient Store." It will last until May 7 on 812 Julu Road, with various events on offer such as pet adoption, a vintage fair, and psychological consultation.

According to the subdistrict, it's designed to create a community for the youth and encourage more engagement in community affairs. With the same vision, the "Jing'an Temple Young Development Alliance" was unveiled on Thursday.


A woman takes a photo.


The exhibition attracts both the old and young.


A bedsheet is turned into art


"Urban Youngsters Life Inspirations Convenient Store" project

Source: SHINE