Many artists moved to Feijiacun after rents in 798 rose too high during the popularity of art in the late 90s.
That made it difficult for emerging artists to afford studios there. So the purpose-built community at Feijiacun was created.
Deng Xinli and his wife Yi Xie used to live in New Zealand. But they moved to Feijiacun early this year for the opportunities it provided. In China there was a greater possibility of working as professional artists, and the couple enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of the studio village.
Although Li Changlong teaches art in Shanghai, he bought a studio in Feijiacun to allow himself time to paint in this environment. He has been working here for two years, and chose it as a place to find inspiration, and the company of fellow artists.
In the last few years Chang Xiugong has enjoyed increasing success in Beijing’s and abroad. He had lived in other artistic communities, but Feijiacun is now the base for him to concentrate on his unique method of embroidery painting.
Around 80 artists live in the area, but the community houses few galleries and restaurants, and is not a spot for tourists or art lovers to visit.
Instead, it is a meeting place of creativity, where people work at their own rhythm.
The village contains a wide range of artists, some of whom are looking to break into the national and international art scene, and others who are already well established.
Feijiacun may not have the atmosphere and excitement of the early days of 798, but this artists’ village is now one of the city’s centers of creativity. And it is in communities just like this, here and across China, that the direction of Chinese art is being shaped.
（英语点津 Helen 编辑)
Cameron Broadhurst is a print journalist from New Zealand. He has worked in news and features reporting in New Zealand and Indonesia, and also has experience in documentary and film production. He is a copy editor in the BizChina section of China Daily Website.