Extended until 25th APRIL, an exhibition exploring the other Shanghai by Merseyside based photography duo Ant-e-Art, is on display in Renshaw Street, in the windows of the old Lewis’ building. This fascinating collection is the polar opposite to the sandblasted, hermetically sealed new, temporary, city shown to visitors during the World Expo 2010. And it has a lot to say about our own home, too. Transition and change is something our two port cities share – not just an increased willingness to ‘do business’ following our sojourn in their pavilions last summer.
Ant-e-Art, made up of Paul Wicker and Africa Bocos, visited Shanghai before the World Expo last year and were struck by the rich and diverse street culture of the city, and the strong links between it and us, its former colonisers.
The Other Shanghai is a portrait of life in Shanghai now, a photographic attempt to keep alive and display some of the other Shanghainese culture and behaviour for everybody’s eyes, from returning Expo-only-visitors to tourists in Liverpool, locals and anyone interested in this, China’s most western-facing city, and its dizzyingly diverse history and cultures.
“‘The Other Shanghai’ started in Yue Yang road, when after taking photos of a dressed up mannequin against a graffiti wall, we attempted to have a drink in the pub across the road. It was only when we noticed the “sorry-we-are-closed” sign hanging off the window that we came across the name of the place: Abbey Road Pub. As both artists and adopted “Liverpudlians”, aware of the historical links between Liverpool and Shanghai, we felt the need to tell a story about some aspects of Shanghai’s idiosyncrasy through the lens. The aim was to complement the views and impressions of Shanghai that the public would get through all the marketing and publicity displayed as part of Expo 2010,” Ant-e-Art say.
“The Other Shanghai” is dedicated to aimless wanderers, to those who observe, reflect and get easily entangled with what other cultures have to
The exhibition can be viewed 24 hours a day in the windows of the Watson
Building (ex- Lewis’s)