Photo by INK Studio
Twenty minutes' walk northeast of 798 is a different type of art community. It's quieter here and less commercialized, despite its most famous resident Ai Weiwei. The best place to start is an Ai Weiwei-designed modern grey-brick complex, housing Galerie Urs Meile. For nearly two decades, this Swiss-owned gallery and its sister space in Switzerland have been showcasing the work of European and Chinese artists such as Not Vital and Wang Xingwei. Move on to non-profit Video Bureau, which archives the works of Chinese video artists, including Zhang Peili. Don’t miss French-owned De Sarthe Beijing, White Space, which moved in 1999 from 798 to Caochangdi, and Three Shadows Photography Art Centre.
By Sophie Friedman, AFAR Local Expert