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Spring Season Issue 75 | Technique of Scenography: The Cyber City Aesthetic Shaped by Ideology and Science Fiction


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Spring Season Issue 75 | Technique of Scenography:  The Cyber City Aesthetic Shaped by Ideology and Science Fiction
Spring Season Issue 75 | Technique of Scenography:  The Cyber City Aesthetic Shaped by Ideology and Science Fiction

Time & Location

Mar 05, 2021, 9:30 PM – 11:30 PM EST

Zoom Meeting| Youtube Live| BilliBilli Live

About the Event

CVSZ 2021 Spring Season — Online Panel No.75

Spring Season Issue 75  Technique of Scenography:  The Cyber City Aesthetic Shaped by Ideology and Science Fiction


New York Time (ETS) March 5th 9:30pm--11:30pm

Beijing Time March 6th 10:30am--12:30pm



Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting Number:899 862 3159 

YouTube Live

Bilibili Live


Cao XueFei, Cai Yixuan

Guest Speaker:

Liam Young, Stanley Chan 

Online Panel Synopsis:

There is a silicon-chip-composed wave rushing to the ground: it folds the well-organized horizon of urban landscape and is carved as crossed street lines scanned by satellite monitors. This speculative scene is presented in the project of Brave New Now by Liam Young, resonating with Chinese Sci-fi novel Waste Tide of Stanley Chan that speculates ‘Silicon Isle’ based on Chinese Shantou geo-cultures with the epitome of geopolitical resource extraction, digital labour and e-commodity, and energy and capital flows operated by tech behemoths. Today, the controversies of technological application are shifted to the Global South. Both works of Chan and Young reflect the hidden unknown fields beneath the splendid cityscapes, such as vast ecological treasures that supply the global chain of luxury goods, while whose inhabitants live in slums and stuffy e-waste Isle with the contrast of digital cities and respiratory infrastructures.

The fast-developing countries seem to grasp the essence of ‘development’ in the compressed temporality. They aim to catch up with digital technologies while old facilities, traditional management systems, and power relations of clans and authorities are relatively left aside. The homogenous imagination of smart cityscapes is not only driven by economic investment and global policies, but also permeated by mainstream films and Sci-fictions. Hollywood sci-fictions created a wonderland exclusive for digital scenography, and humanistic dystopian works such as Japanese Animations, TV series were romanticized as popular cultures, becoming a blueprint of urban design. 

The powerful  scenography creates utopian or dystopian urban landscape, closely related to the local religion and regional culture. From Los Angeles in the United States, Tokyo in Japan, Seoul in South Korea, Hong Kong in China and Bangkok in China, the tension between high-tech life and poor production is also shaped by religious belief, clan relationship and regional culture, forming different cybercity aesthetics.

In terms of Chan and Young’s works that reflect Asian cyber-cities, we further pose several questions: how do local religions and cultures influence both local cyber aesthetics and life services? How do both Hollywood-type films and dystopian works inspire and reinforce urban planning? And also, how is ideology behind publicities of different national sci-fi films and novels?

A new project and a book that both Stanly Chan and Liam Young  have collaborated on are 'Planet City.'

Planet City is a science fiction mega city for the entire population of the earth. The city is developed with scientists and political theorists, an imaginary city literally shaped by ideologies of climate change and sustainability. 'Planet City' is an urgent examination of the productive potential of extreme densification in an imagined future where ten billion people surrender the rest of the planet to a global wilderness. In a vision that runs counter to our current world, the book describes a radical reversal of planetary sprawl, where humans retreat from our vast network of cities and supply chains into one hyper-dense metropolis. Not a techno-utopian fantasy, this work of critical architecture and speculative fiction is grounded in statistical analysis, research, and traditional knowledge.

1min trailer- of the 'Planet City' ---

Guest Speaker Introduction:

Liam Young

Liam Young is a speculative architect and director who operates in the spaces between design, fiction and futures. He is co-founder of Tomorrows Thoughts Today, an urban futures think tank, exploring the local and global implications of new technologies and Unknown Fields, a nomadic research studio that travels on expeditions to chronicle these emerging conditions as they occur on the ground. Described by the BBC as ‘the man designing our futures’, his visionary films and speculative worlds are both extraordinary images of tomorrow and urgent examinations of the environmental questions facing us today. As a concept designer he visualizes the cities, spaces and props of our imaginary futures including work on the forthcoming features Swan Song, starring Mahershala Ali and Awkwafina for Apple TV and Folding City for Chinese Production company Wanda in addition to production designing an unannounced new sci fi series for eOne. With his own films he is a BAFTA nominated producer and has premiered with platforms ranging from Channel 4, SxSW, the New York Metropolitan Museum, The Royal Academy, the BBC and the Guardian. His work has been collected internationally by museums such as MOMA, the Met, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Gallery of Victoria and M Plus Hong Kong and has been acclaimed in both mainstream and design media including features with Wired, New Scientist, Arte, Canal+, Time magazine and many more. His fictional work is informed by his academic research and has held guest professorships at Princeton University, MIT, and Cambridge and now runs the ground breaking Masters in Fiction and Entertainment at SCI Arc in Los Angles. He has published several books including the recent Machine Landscapes: Architectures of the Post Anthropocene and Planet City, a story of a fictional city for the entire population of the earth.

Chen Qiufan

Chen Qiufan (Chinese: 陈楸帆) also known as Stanley Chan, is a Chinese science fiction writer, scriptwriter, translator and curator. His first novel was Waste Tide, which "combines realism with allegory to present the hybridity of humans and machines". His short fiction works have won three Galaxy Awards for Chinese Science Fiction, twelve Nebula Awards for Science Fiction and Fantasy in Chinese. "The Fish of Lijiang" received the Best Short Form Award for the 2012 Science Fiction & Fantasy Translation Awards. His stories have been published in Fantasy & Science Fiction, MIT Technology Review, Clarkesworld, Year's Best SF, Interzone, and Lightspeed, as well as influential Chinese science fiction magazine Science Fiction World. His works have been translated into German, French, Finnish, Korean, Czech, Italian, Japanese and Polish and other languages.

CVSZ 2021 春季单元 — 专题第75期



3月5日美国时间 EST 9:30pm--11:30pm




加入 Zoom 会议

会议号:899 862 3159 



主持人:曹雪菲 蔡艺璇


Liam Young


单元策划:曹雪菲 | 本期编辑:曹雪菲

✦出品人: 徐頔 |  研究室主任: 翁静妍


在Liam Young作品《勇敢的新时光》(Brave New Now)中,一股由硅芯片组成的波浪冲向地面,折叠了井井有条的城市景观,并被卫星监控器扫描成交叉的街道线。这种奇观化的场景与陈楸帆的科幻小说《荒潮》(Waste Tide)中的世界有许多共通之处。小说中,作者基于中国汕头的地域文化想象出一座专门回收硅胶义体的垃圾之岛——“硅屿”。这种反乌托邦的未来社会景观,地质资源开采,数字化劳动,电子垃圾以及科技巨头的资本流动之间保有关联。陈楸帆和Liam Young的作品都反映了繁荣的城市景观下不常示人的隐藏部分,例如蕴藏巨大生态宝藏的金银岛供应者全球奢饰品链条,但岛上居民却生活在贫民窟;以及藏匿在便捷的数字城市背后的电子垃圾岛。





Liam Young

Liam Young是景观建筑师兼导演,在设计,小说和未来等领域内工作。他是智库Tomorrow Thoughts Today的联合创始人,专注于探讨新技术对本地和全球的影响。他同时也创立了Unknown Fields,一个游牧的研究型工作室,通过远征以记录发生在各地的新兴情况。英国广播公司(BBC)称其为“设计我们的未来的人”,他的电影和景观世界既是放映未来的图像,又是应对当下我们面临的环境问题的紧急检讨。作为一名概念设计师,他将想象中的未来的城市,空间和道具形象化,包括即将制作的《天鹅之歌》,由苹果电视台的Mahershala Ali和Awkwafina主演,为中国制作公司Wanda担任的《折叠城市》等工作,此外还制作了未发布的新科幻剧eOne。他的电影获得了BAFTA提名,并在Channel 4,SxSW,纽约大都会博物馆,皇家学院,BBC和《卫报》上展映。他的作品已被国际现代艺术博物馆,大都会博物馆,维多利亚和阿尔伯特博物馆,维多利亚国家美术馆和香港M Plus等国际博物馆收藏,并在主流媒体和设计媒体中广受赞誉,其中包括《连线》,《新科学家》,《Arte》 ,《Canal +》,《时代杂志》等等。他的小说创作得益于他的学术研究,并曾在普林斯顿大学,麻省理工学院和剑桥大学担任客座教授,现在在洛杉矶SCI Arc的小说和娱乐硕士专业任职。他出版了几本书,包括最近的《机器景观》:《后人类纪的建筑》和《行星城市》




毕业于伦敦大学金史密斯学院,Conversazione撰稿人。曾撰稿于电影媒体、协助独立影展与电影节策划。现关注全球南方历史与思辨 未来议题,研究方向为地缘政治下的技术与文化,中国城市空间与思想变迁。


设计师、策展人、创作者。Conversazione 非盈利艺术组织创始人。毕业于罗德岛设计学院建筑系,创作领域涉及建筑设计、短片电影及实验剧场,致力于探索游戏化的剧场空间、媒体技术与空间政治


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