in Collaborations , Videos | 18 NOV 22

The Swatch Art Peace Hotel is a Catalyst for Creativity

In Shanghai, China, artists Francoise Issaly, Jiang Lining and Angeles Infante discuss how the residency facilitates the development of their practice

in Collaborations , Videos | 18 NOV 22
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‘My connection to the city is stronger now’ says artist Françoise Issaly in this video. ‘I have been allowed to walk the streets, walk the parks, without having to worry about anything else.’ Originally from Canada, Issaly is speaking from her studio in Shanghai, China where is she is currently in residence at The Swatch Art Peace Hotel.

Opened in 2011 by the Swiss watch company, the hotel was a gesture to demonstrate Swatch’s commitment to art and artists. The mission, according to Carlo Giordanetti, CEO of the Hotel, was to give creatives a space to enjoy time and give them the freedom to develop their practice.

Returning to Shanghai after a long absence is artist Jiang Lining, who also features in the video. Titled ‘Recluse’, his project is about looking inwards while focusing on the environment he is currently occupying. ‘This curtain’ he says, ‘this wall, this line, the curve of the shadow, they all come from the hallway.’

Angeles Infante on the other hand, who is from Chile, is looking outwards to Shanghai and its inhabitants for inspiration. Currently collecting stories from children who grew up there, her intention is for the children to feel a sense of belonging. ‘When planning the city,’ she says, ‘we need to think of them.’

While speaking about the future of the Hotel, Giordanetti states that the most important part of the residency is what happens to the artists after they leave. The community that is formed is what for him, ‘keeps the soul of The Swatch Art Peace Hotel alive around the world.’