In an exhibition currently open in Shanghai, visitors can take a tour through the city as it might be 100 years from now—largely underwater.
Whales and turtles glide between the city’s signature skyscrapers. Elsewhere, maps show redrawn territories, plans outline climate change contingencies, and visitors are invited to discover a phantom flower on the verge of extinction.
The second phase of the ambitious, wide-reaching—and to its detractors at least, decidedly disjointed—Shanghai Project, continues its approach to workshopping ideas for the city’s future. This iteration, which comes in the form of a sprawling exhibition, is titled “Seeds of Time.”
“It is too ambitious,” said Dr. Yongwoo Lee, the outgoing Executive Director of Himalayas Museum and co-Artistic Director of the Shanghai Project. (The project’s other co-Artistic Director is the renowned curator Hans Ulrich Obrist.)
But Lee is unapologetic about the project’s lofty ambitions. In fact, he’s downright enthusiastic. “From the beginning,” he said, “we announced that Shanghai Project would be a multidisciplinary ideas platform, we’re not going to show a very ‘organized’ event. This way, people can come together to discuss.”