Curators, administrators, directors and art dealers are all really flight attendants for this thing called art.

Ted Potter, in How to Survive and Prosper as an Artist (15)

If we were educated to believe that being a fine artist is a valid profession, there would be fewer artists needing an occupational backup.

Carroll Michels, How to Survive and Prosper as an Artist (3)


Why Is This Huge Chinese Mall Empty?

The giant mall you see above didn’t die. It has never lived, having been nothing but empty since it opened seven years ago. According to its Wikipedia entry, it has an astounding 2,350 available retail spaces, only 47 of which are occupied.

Meet the world’s largest shopping mall, the New South China Mall in Dongguan, China. It is twice as big as the huge Mall of America outside Minneapolis. […]

The mall has 7,100,000 square feet (163 acres) of leasable floor space and 9,600,000 square feet (220 acres) of total space. Wikipedia reports that “the mall has seven zones modeled on international cities, nations and regions, including Amsterdam, Paris, Rome, Venice, Egypt, the Caribbean, and California.” It has a replica of the Arc de Triomphe, another of the bell tower of St. Mark’s in Venice, and a 1.3-mile canal with gondolas.

What the New South China Mall (the owners added “new” to the name two years after the opening) doesn’t have is people or business.

Read more. [Images: Wikimedia Commons, Remko Tanis/Flickr]

There’s a three-storey mall on the edge of Vancouver’s Chinatown. They opened it when I was in high school. It’s called International Village, but the demographic is clearly Asian. The third floor is an art house theatre. Half of the second floor is a food court. The rest of the space is almost always empty. It has been almost always empty as long as I can remember.

I don’t know what it means. I don’t know if it says something about hubris. I only know that it sounds very familiar, that architecture looks very familiar, even on this side of the world.