DCF Installation Proposal Shenzhen Hong Kong Bienniale for Architecture and Urbanism 2009
By Neville Mars with Lu Jia.
Project PDF 10000 Flowers

10000 Flowers Video Installation Trial

A section of the final Shenzhen Biennial installation


又名: 异想天开五幅一联

DCF 此前研究过北京的环路系统,它如同藤蔓缠绕在紫禁城,同时造就了障碍与恐慌,令人窒息。


10.000 FLOWERS

... or, Fantastic Pentaptych

Previously Neville Mars and the DCF have explored Beijing’s five-ringed highway system as a suffocating vine tangled around the Forbidden City, promoting a simultaneous sense of obstruction and panic. But there is another side to the story. The orbital ring roads conceal a potentially vast network of social space. We have designed a closed triangle kaleidoscope capable of unearthing the hidden qualities of space surrounding the inner-city highways. Its lens reveals the splendor of the urban landscape, ultimately promoting a sense of urban liberation.

Each film will cover one full journey along each of Beijing’s newly built subway lines, revealing the massive scope of this transportation project and unearthing a world of what the underground traveler is missing. At any given time, one will be able to see an image of the world above each of the five main subway lines, providing an intriguing cross-section of the city’s social and environmental life.

Specifically not designed for pedestrians or gatherers, Beijing’s inner-city highway dominated space often seem like a labyrinth of infrastructure, over-defining – and consequently devaluing – public space, coarsening the natural spatial order of an expanding and compressing urban landscape, isolating individuals from each other, and leaving only undesirable scraps for social activity, contributing to a sense of urban dread. In considering Beijing’s inner-city highways and ring roads to be the central heart of the city, 10.000 FLOWERS compels the observer to see them as a vital force in defining social and pedestrian space. This video panorama portrays their over dimensioned space as a liberating influence, revealing the beauty of the urban landscape, and minutely detailing the subtleties of documented social space within the highways.

A closed-triangle kaleidoscope, built to hold a video camera, allows the observer to experience complete cross sections of Beijing through a prism, positioning vastly different sections of the city – at proportionally varying speeds – against each other. The observer takes on a faceted fly’s eye view of the world from inside the hermetically sealed environment of the car - like a goldfish in a tank. The large-scale images broadcast a new sense of space and largeness, fostering discourse surrounding a shared urban reality. Whimsical and engaging, 10.000 FLOWERS opens up the urban bubble, contributing to a feeling of infinite possibility.


SPECS: a video panorama

10.000 FLOWERS is a video installation, filmed using a custom built kaleidoscope large enough to fit a video camera. The five 16:9
wide-screen videos – each 4m x 2.25m – line up to form a single panorama.

Initial video tests


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