area 109 | art and architecture

architect: MAD

location: Shenzen, China

year: 2009

MAD’s design for the Urbanism\Architecture Shenzhen & Hongkong Bi-city Biennale, the Monster’s Footprint debuted in the Citizen Square of Shenzhen. It is a sunken space shade of a giant footprint, paved by pink EPDM material, functioning as the playground for the citizens in the city center. Shenzhen is a village turned city overnight. Enchanted by the bursting power of economic development, the city center is filled with extensive, and yet indistinctive icons. The coarse scale and preposterous symbolism of these icons have detached themselves from people’s daily experience. The Monster’s Footprint attempts to enter this very surreal reality, and offer a possibility for city dwellers to find their own freedom and joy in the Citizen Square.

MAD is a Beijing-based design office dedicated to innovation in architectural practice, landscape design and urban planning. MAD develops its unique concept of futurism through a persistent investigation of the symbiotic potentials amid nature and technology. MAD aspires to design in close harmony with nature, offering people the freedom to develop independent urban experiences. MAD’s ongoing projects include: Absolute Towers in Toronto, Canada (an international competition won by MAD in 2006), Sinosteel International Plaza in Tianjin, China (a 358 meter high rise building), Erdos Museum in Erdos, Inner Mongolia, Poly Art Center in Beijing, China, Taichung Convention Center in Taipei, Taiwan, Urban Forest in Chongqing, China, as well as varied large scale public complexes and residential housing projects in Denmark, Hong Kong, Dubai, Singapore, Malaysia, Japan and Costa Rica.