Collective Contemporist

Assembly Beijing:
A Global Creative and Cultural Exchange
25–27.10, 2018


A hub for creative, academic and business collaborations
East x West / Art x Technology / Creativity x Commerce


Assembly is a not-for-profit initiative created by Collective Contemporist.

Rooted in China with an international vision and outreach, it aims to bring together the world’s best creative talents to engage with China’s burgeoning art and design scene, creating a hub where artists, designers, architects and entrepreneurs converge to share ideas and resources; a platform to nurture collaborations and exchange, for creative, academic and business pursuits.

For 2018, the pilot programme will take place in a converted heritage courtyard (redesigned by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma) in the Qianmen area of historic Beijing, and will include other events around the Chinese capital.



Day 1 / October 25, Thursday
By Invitation Only

An intimate gathering in the historic Beijing courtyard; an invitation-only list of international and local guests spent an afternoon together discussing design trends and ways to enable more creative collaborations between East and West.

Session 1: Designer Showcase

Sharing of work and future projects by Carolina Maggio, international representative of UK Studio Based Upon, and Lonneke Gordijn, the co-founder of Dutch duo Studio Drift.

Session 2: Roundtable Discussion

A closed-door style salon featuring a hand-picked group of locals – professionals from the creative, design, art, media & business community. Points of discussion: Chinese design scene, the challenges of commissions, collaboration between East and West, and the future of spaces (real estate). Speakers: Carolina Maggio of Based Upon (UK), Lonneke Gordijn of Studio Drift (NL), Sadao Tsuchiya of Urban Lifestyle Lab (JP), Li Ximi of Urbancraft (CN), Zhang Leizhong of EICO (CN) and director and designer Liu Linian (CN). Moderated by Ben Hobson of Dezeen (UK)


Lonneke Gordjin
Studio Drift
The Netherlands

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Carolina Maggio
Based Upon

United Kingdom

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Ben Hobson

United Kingdom


Sadao Tsuchiya
Urban Lifestyle Lab


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Li Ximi

Beijing, China


Liu Linian
Director & Designer
Beijing, China


Zhang Leizhong

Shenzhen, China


Day 2 / October 26, Friday
Public Registration

Series of events to inspire a community of design lovers. We extended the guest list to a wider selection of media members, creative professionals and design enthusiasts. Today is dedicated to media engagement, providing an opportunity for our delegation to share their work with a wider audience locally.

Session 1: Dezeen “China Design Power” Keynote

A new China content series on Dezeen will be launched by the end of this year. The idea is to explore architecture and design in China and show that China is well on its way to being a global design power – and is doing so on its own terms.

Session 2: Dezeen Film Screening

A Documentary by Dezeen: ‘Elevation – How Drones Will Change Cities’ Drones will transform cities, revolutionising how people travel, how goods are delivered and how buildings look and are constructed, according to a documentary by Dezeen. Leading figures from the worlds of architecture and technology were interviewed exclusively for the movie.

Session 3: Dezeen Panel Discussion

A Global Look on China’s Future of Design: Qiao Yan of DJI studio, Xu Hao of NIO, Huang Wenjing of OPEN Architecture and Zang Feng and He Zhe of People’s Architecture Office

Session 4: Design Hotels Talk – “Future of Chinese Rural Design“

Chaired by Design Hotels, this discussion features a panel of local as well as international design experts to explore the increasingly important future outlook of rural design in China. Speakers: Hua Li of Trace Architecture Office, Christian Taeubert of CLOU Architects and Jinou Park of Design Hotels. Moderated by Maurice Li of Collective Contemporist.

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Jinou Park
Design Hotels



Qiao Yan
DJI Studio
Shanghai, China

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He Zhe, People’s Architecture Office
Beijing, China


Huang Wenjing
OPEN Architecture
Beijing, China


Christian Taeubert
CLOU Architects
Beijing, China

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Xu Hao

Shanghai, China

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Hua Li, Trace Architecture Office
Beijing, China


Day 3 / October 27, Saturday
Community Session

Serpentine Pavilion Beijing Talk

Studio Drift, Based Upon and Dezeen talked about how design improves every day life; Hong Kong Cinematographer Guan Benliang, Chinese multimedia artist Cao Fei and architect Che Fei of CU Office talked about how we define “art” in today’s day and age and how to inspire us to take the circuitous route and explore art in the world around us.


Guan Benliang
Hong Kong, China

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Cao Fei
Multimedia Artist
Guangzhou, China


Che Fei
CU Office
Beijing, China



ASSEMBLY is dedicated to partner with a selected roster of leading organisations in design and culture, all working to contribute to meaningful exchange and to support the design community.


Damochang 220

A fine example of urban regeneration in the historical Beijing quarter. Located on the east of Qianmen, it was a neighbourhood that thrived under the spirit and commerce of craftsmen since the Ming Dynasty. Damochang 220 is repurposed by Japanese architectural office Kengo Kuma and Associates.

Design Hotels

Design Hotels AG is a publicly traded company providing hospitality services to a network of over 300 independently owned small boutique and luxury hotels in over 50 countries worldwide. The firm maintains offices in London, Barcelona, New York City and Singapore in addition to its headquarters in Berlin.


Launched in 2006, Dezeen has grown rapidly ever since with audience base growing each year. By 2017, the website had 2.5 million unique visitors per month, making them one of the 5,000 most popular websites on the planet according to Alexa, as well as the most popular website about architecture and design.

Serpentine Galleries Beijing Pavilion

Serpentine Galleries and WF CENTRAL are collaborating for the first time on a major international commissioning of a new architecture Pavilion in Beijing, designed by JIAKUN Architects. Modeled on the internationally acclaimed Serpentine Pavilion annual commission in London’s Royal Park of Kensington Gardens.