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China’s new arts centre, featuring a Sam Jacob-designed V&A gallery, will open 2 December

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Maki & Maki: Design Society render

Design Society, a major new cultural hub in Shenzhen, China, has announced an official opening date of 2 December after originally planning to open in October. The “cultural hub” will open with a series of public events, including talks, performances, and inaugural exhibition Values of Design, to be held at the V&A Gallery.

Design Society will be based in the Sea World Culture and Arts Centre in Shekou district, and comprise multiple galleries, masterplanned by Japanese architects Maki & Maki. The V&A Gallery has been designed by London design studio Sam Jacob.

According to the V&A, the partnership between state-owned, Hong Kong-based company China Merchants Shekou Holdings (CMSK) and the museum is the first of its kind. The exhibition will feature 250 objects from the V&A’s permanent collection from 900AD to present day, and 31 countries, aiming “to frame a global debate about how design is valued and how values shape design”. According to the Financial Times this will span from items such as an 18th-century Iranian astrolabe to a Stella McCartney jumpsuit for H&M.

Ole Bouman, director of Design Society, commented on the show: ”In an age of accelerating change, the future belongs to those who are agile, curious and creative. More specifically, when people are looking for answers to the big issues of our time, such as climate change, the pursuit of a better life, the protection of health, as well as ongoing urbanisation and digitisation, it has become increasingly clear that human creativity will be the critical factor to decide success over failure. And not just creativity as a goal in itself, but creativity as an applied human endeavour. Future-proof states don’t curb the creative drive, they support it. They make creativity a pillar of their legitimacy. [This] show sends the message of a thriving creative culture in China in relation with global developments in design today."

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Maki & Maki: Design Society render

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Maki & Maki: Design Society render

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Maki & Maki: Design Society render

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Maki & Maki: Design Society render