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“Venue as visual as the art within”

Power Station of Art
Ranked #78 of 1,316 things to do in Shanghai
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Level Contributor
142 reviews
63 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 176 helpful votes
“Venue as visual as the art within”
Reviewed March 30, 2013

The old powerstation is the perfect environment for contemporary art and the building conversion alone deserves your attention. Spent 4 hours here looking at the Biennale exhibition and can't wait to go back - if only to wander around and enjoy the architecture.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank xingming
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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93 reviews from our community

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English first
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
62 reviews
13 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“I really wanted to like this museum...”
Reviewed March 28, 2013

We visited the Power Station of Art at the end of March, during the last few days of the 9th Shanghai Biennale. I think we would have enjoyed the museum and the art much more except for two issues: 1) Almost all of the video projectors (and there were many of them throughout the show) were turned off. In general, it seems the staff at the museum had pretty much stopped taking care of the exhibits, and were effectively done with the show. 2) There was no heat in the whole building. The inside temperature of the building was 10C (The big thermometer on the outside smokestack showed 9C). It was very hard to enjoy the art when we felt like we were walking through a giant meat locker.

Overall, I think this would have been a great exhibit and venue, but it strikes me as very odd that a huge amount of money must have been spent to create this huge art museum out of an old power station, yet they couldn't find a way to turn on the heat in the building. It also seemed odd that the museum staff seemed to have mostly abandoned the exhibits that required electrical power.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank SoMuchToSeeAndDo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
Level Contributor
19 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Great Space and fantastic show!”
Reviewed February 8, 2013

We spent a wintery day at the Power Station this week. Well worth the trip. Currently a Surrealist show from The Pompidou in Paris is on exhibit on the 7th floor, drawing some pieces from outstanding domestic and international artists. We spent 4 hours in the massive, modern building, also viewing the 1012 Biennale: Reactivation. I could have stayed all day! Both shows are definitely worth the trip!

Open from 9 am to 5 pm, the Biennale was free, and the Surrealist show was 20 rmb (bargain!). There are quaint cafes, clean bathrooms, lockers and even a nursery (on the map, but I did not see it). The well-appointed gift shop has great books, very interesting modern gadgets and beautiful hand-crafted jewelry that will set you back at least a few hundred rmb.

You may have difficulty finding a taxi after you enjoy the show, as the complex is a bit off the beaten path. The metro stop is a quick 10 minute walk at most.

One of the best outings we've had in Shanghai since moving here in August!

Visited February 2013
3 Thank Y K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Shanghai, China
Level Contributor
26 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Such an innovative place for modern art”
Reviewed December 12, 2012

I enjoyed visiting this "2010 world expo revival" site. The layout of pieces of art in a former power station make the place worth a trip. Creations of the art biennale are most impressive and the inner design itself of the museum is amazing. Shanghai has now a place to challenge major museums such as MOMA, Tate in London or Pompidou in Paris. Be sure this is only a start to position the city as a leader in modern art events. Shanghai can be proud of this effort to leverage the offer for contempory arts at a premium level. Cannot miss it now whatever the lengh of your stay in Shanghai!

Visited December 2012
Thank Didier P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“New modern art space, worth the trip”
Reviewed November 17, 2012

As a building the Power Station of Art in Shanghai is similar in appeal to Tate Modern in London, it's a massive looking industrial structure in the former Shanghai Expo grounds. We visited in late October 2012 during the Biennale and it was definitely worth the trip to the slightly-off-the-beaten-track location. An easy ride getting there by taxi, we were lucky to grab another one for the return trip right outside the museum as well. Alternatively, a short walk back to the main road may be necessary.

The art exhibits themselves, both international and Chinese, are a bit of a mixed bag - having said that, I'm by no means an art expert and others may find the Chinese exhibits more interesting in the light of political and cultural developments in contemporary China. Nonetheless, some of it was truly exciting and interesting, pieces both by national and international artists. Not sure how the exhibits will change after the Biennale finishes in March 2013.

The huge roof terrace offers great views over the expo grounds and the river, the modern inside spaces are massive and definitely part of the appeal. There are several cafes, all different in style, to relax in and rest the weary feet.

Regarding logistics - when we got there (my husband and two friends who live in Shanghai) we were told that we should have booked a time slot to visit, although entry is free. Everybody else showed up with paper tickets. After looking a bit lost for a couple of minutes the guy at the gate let us in anyway - might be a good idea to check how this works, I couldn't find a website with any more details.

Visited October 2012
2 Thank BarbaraO3006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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