Murals on Dafen’s Walls
The Shenzhen Municipal Urban Planning and Land Resources Commission organized a project entitled “Examine the Village, Paint the City” in August this year. The project which was intended to explore how murals can match a city’s public space and how murals can be revitalized, was participated by more than 20 artists from all over the world.
Artists from Greece, Israel, United States, Switzerland, Germany, Ireland and several others from China were invited to paint murals on the walls of the Dafen Art Museum in Dafen Village, a place given over entirely to the art of painting and the only place of its kind in the world.
Meng Yan, chief designer of Urbanus said, “By using Dafen’s walls, the project tells the public that murals can bring warmness, intimacy and a sense of art to urban people.”
Urbanus, the curatorial team for the project, is a design firm based in Overseas Chinese Town in Nanshan District which designed the Dafen Art Museum in 2005 and the Shanghai Expo’s Shenzhen Pavilion.
“Shenzhen is filled by commercial elements and what we see are all advertisements. If you see an advertisement on the street, you feel it has nothing to do with you, but if you see a mural, you can feel the artist’s emotions and thoughts and then you feel you are a part of it.” Meng said further.
Zhou Hongmei, an official with the urban planning commission, hopes that the Dafen public mural project can be extended to other places in Shenzhen. She has decided to propose to the municipal government to hold an international mural biennale for Shenzhen.