Reading Materials (Including Websites):
In recent years, more and more people, whether foreigners and locals are aware of the importance to protect the city’s heritage and have published a wide range of publications. Most of them are beautifully printed and binded, and available in most major bookstores.
The top of the list goes to the series of books published by OLD CHINA HAND PRESS. Deke Erh’s photographs of Shanghai’s old houses remains to be my favourite. Once you take up a camera and begin shooting around Shanghai, you know how challenging it is! For more information, visit their website at http://www.han-yuan.com/
Another nice book I would love to recommend is Anne Warr’s SHANGHAI ARCHITECTURE GUIDE. Anne Warr is an Australian architect who lived in Shanghai during the 2000s. Besides the book, she got a lot more to offer. Find out more here: http://www.walkshanghai.com/guidebook/index.html
Peter Hibbard’s THE BUND SHANGHAI is a must read for anyone who wants to study the city’s history, as well as BUILDING SHANGHAI: THE STORY OF CHINA’S GATEWAY by Edward Denison and Guang Yu Ren. Both books are very well written with a lot of interesting images and photographs.
A few interesting websites like Graham Earnshaw’s TALES OF OLD SHANGHAI (http://www.earnshaw.com/shanghai-ed-india/tales/tales.htm), Paul French’s CHINA RHYMING (http://www.chinarhyming.com/) and Hughes Martin’s SHANGHAILANDER (http://www.hugues-martin.fr/wordpress/) also worth your time to browse around. All those who are doing an online research on old Shanghai will surely come across VIRTUAL SHANGHAI, a website by Lyons Institute of East Asian Studies (LEAS) that offers a lot of good resources.
Also worth mentioning is the Hungarian architect Lazlo Hudec who lived in Shanghai in the early 20th century. He has designed a lot of buildings in Shanghai including the famous PARK HOTEL. The Hungarian Consulate in Shanghai organized the YEAR OF HUDEC in 2008 to commemorate the 115th anniversary of his birth and 20th anniversary of his death. Their website can be founded here: http://www.hudec.sh
There are also many other Chinese publications available, and you can check out those published by Tongji University Press. Tongji University is one of the best places to study architecture in China, therefore one may notice that the authors have also a lot of technical data of the buildings in the books; like the dimensions of the hall, staircase etc.
Clubs, Societies and Associations:
There are many different groups in the city related to the heritage in Shanghai and they are all great places to meet like minded people! Below are the two of the best groups that have more to offer… …
Historic Shanghai founded by Tess Johnston, Tina Kanagaratnam and Wm Patrick Cranley with the goal of raising awareness of the value of Shanghai’s built heritage. It was formerly known as the Shanghai Historic House Association.
Explore Shanghai Heritage: A volunteer group founded by a few expatriate ladies (including the architect Anne Warr), this group has produced a few beautiful maps and hosts regular meetings at the German Consulate on Yongfu Road.
We do offer (free but unguided) walk tours here at Disappearing Corners, but wouldn’t it be nicer to join one of these tours guided by experts in the field? I’ve listed below some of the people who offer such services.
1) Tess Johnston: http://www.tessinshanghai.com/lecturesandtours.html
2) Spencer Dodington: http://www.spencerdodington.com/toursmainpage.htm
3) SHANGHAI FLANEUR: http://www.shanghai-flaneur.com/
4) Walk Shanghai (by Anne Warr): http://www.walkshanghai.com/walks/index.html
5) Dvir Bar-Gal: http://www.shanghai-jews.com/1.htm