Hongtao Zhou
Inflatables Penetrate Buildings at Tongji Design Week in Shanghai
Hongtao Zhou uses inflatable installations to penetrate historical buildings during Tongji Design Week at Tongji University's College of Design and Innovation (D&I), to celebrate the event and to encourage people to break boundaries in art and design. The installation explores the unique spatial qualities of the Shanghai Old Bus Repair Station (now D&I's Innovation Field) and Tongji Museum's historical building by empowering inflatable structures to shoot out, break through, capture, squeeze, and contain entries and spaces. They animate the inconspicuous space through manipulation, emphasizing changes and creating movements to provoke thought and criticism on the evolving urban environment and the endless desire of space in big cities.

The installation respects the historical buildings by doing no physical change, but instead, adds visible air flows to twist, connect, and blend space from both the interior and exterior. It activates and converts the site into play grounds and selfie hotspots. The ever changing installation gives the audience an opportunity to witness the creation, expansion and penetration of space. By observing the dialogue between architecture, materials, weather, and other visitors, users can experience the space transition, material behavior, and the organic forms of our living spaces by participating in them.

Hongtao Zhou is a Shanghai Oriental Scholar Professor and Director of Innovation Field at the Tongji University's College of Design and Innovation and Shanghai Institute of Design and Innovation. Participating: Zhihao Li, Lujia Peng, Man Xu, Ling Lin, Xiaoxiao Duan, Xi Ling, Zehui Ye, Chufei Liao, Meng Fang, Hongqiang Ge, Guoyi Zhou, Ying Zhang, Haiyan Huo, Shuiqun Zhang, Minxuan Wang and Marcos Cruz Ortiz.