fire foodies club by atelier bow-wow invites urban culture of shenzhen to eat beneath giant chimneys

fire foodies club by atelier bow-wow invites urban culture of shenzhen to eat beneath giant chimneys

drawing from the urban fabric of shenzhen, china, atelier bow-wow celebrates the street behaviours of the locale in their installation for the bi-city biennale of urbanism\architecture (UABB). comprising of three large scale chimneys suspended from a steel frame, the fire foodies club encourages shared cooking and eating in a bid to encourage a community network whilst drawing attention to the effects of industrialisation in the area.

the chimneys are suspended from a light pink steel structure,
images © zhang chao unless stated otherwise



the fire foodies club has been designed by atelier bow-wow as an easily buildable and dismantle-able pop-up, assembled using a series of bolted parts. located in the urban village alongside the UABB café, several cooks that have their shops on the streets of the area are invited on site during the exhibition. this will allow the visitors and residents to enjoy film viewings or lectures with locally made food.

the installation is called fire foodies club © designboom



the FFC was initially meant as a space where street cooking would be fuelled by reclaimed wood from the maintenance of shenzhen’s green areas. however, the use of open fire was recently banned in the entire region due to high pollution levels and the implementation of special action ozone pollution control. finally the project became not only a gathering place and an outdoor extension of the cafe, but also a comment on the effects of industrialisation and the barriers between people and natural resources because of economic growth and its’ impact on the world.

the chimneys are constructed from large steel sheets bolted together © designboom


the installation comprises of three large chimneys


the space acts as a hang out for shenzhen’s urban locale


tables invite local eateries to cater for the community


the large chimneys illuminate the social space © designboom


seating slots together in a changeable fashion © designboom


simple and economically designed seating © designboom


a look through the large chimneys © designboom


illustrative render


illustrative drawing


3D model demonstrating the steel structure suspending the large chimneys


atelier bow-wow


about the UABB

designboom is main international media partner of the UABB, the seventh bi-city biennale of urbanism\architecture in shenzhen.

UABB is the only exhibition in the world to explore issues of urbanization, and this year’s edition of is jointly curated by hou hanrou (artistic directore of the MAXXI in rome) and founding partners of architecture studio URBANUS, liu xiaodu and meng yan. under the theme of ‘cities, grow in difference’, three sections are presented:
the two sections of urbanism, namely  – ‘global south’ (liu xiaodu) and – ‘urban village’ (meng yan) are co-curated by zhu ye,
the – ‘art making city’ section (hou hanrou) is co-curated by yang yong.

urban villages and globally distinctive alternative practices are in juxtaposition with the interaction between the urban, architecture, art and culture for research and discussion and UABB’s highlights are the site-specificic installations.
different from other biennales in the world, as a site, the UABB is witness to the most drastic urbanization of the 20th and 21st centuries. as the outcome of collision and fusion between rapid urbanization and the urban-rural dual structure in the planned economic period, urban villages have been preserved as a highly potent urban laboratory and base for breeding alternative lifestyles, where newcomers start to settle in the city. the curatorial team wants to redefine the experience for visitors, in view of the special environment of the urban village — a more diversified, open-minded understanding and imagination on urban living and evolutionary patterns, thus to critically think about the value of urban life.

UABB’s main venue is nantou old town, shenzhen, china, with sub-venues set up in other urban villages around shenzhen.
december 15, 2017 – march 15, 2018

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