Harvard CAMLab

Seminar | New Buildings in Old Shanghai: The Allied Architects Talks to L. E. Hudec

Date & Time:

2022 JAN. 15, SATURDAY 9:00 PM EST
2022 JAN. 16, SUNDAY 10:00 AM CST

Guest Speaker: 

HUA Xiahong

Professor, College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University
Visiting Fellow in School of Architecture, Yale University
Author of Shanghai Hudec Architecture (2013)

JIANG Chunqian

Senior Architect, Registered Architect, Class 1, Jiang Architects & Engineers
Author of The Allied Architects, Shanghai, 1931—1952 (2022)


LU Yongyi

Professor, College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University

JIANG Jiawei

Assistant Professor, College of Architecture and Urban Planning, Tongji University
Executive Editor, Architecture China



Associate in Research, Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies, Harvard University

MIN Jiajian

Project Manager, Harvard CAMLab
Associate, Studio Link-Arc, LLC

The Allied Architects or Huagai Architects, which was active in Shanghai from 1931-1952 is one of the most important architectural firms in the history of modern Chinese architecture. (1900-1983) Three architects, YOU Zhaoshen (1898-1978), CHEN Zhi (1902-2002), and TONG Jun (1900-1983) established the firm in Shanghai, and their architectural projects are mainly distributed in Shanghai, Nanjing, Suzhou and Southwestern China. Huagai Architects has made important explorations and contributions to the construction and development of modern cities in its country.

The Hungarian architect László Hudec (1893-1958) was one of Shanghai’s most prolific foreign architects. After being exiled from his home country, Hudec found his place in Shanghai in late 1918 and became one of the most famous architectural designers in the city. In search of a place to expand his craft and call home, his rich life story includes chapters in Switzerland and finally the United States, where he immigrated in 1947. Hudak's buildings have a wide range of functions and appear in different styles, and many have named him as the pioneer of Shanghai’s new architectural tones in the 20th century.

Harvard University's CAMLab "China Builders" project team was honored to invite Professor Jiang Chunqian, a research expert from Huagai Architects, and Professor Hua Xiahong, a research expert on Hudec to present their insights and commune about their work. They will be in dialogue with guests Professor Lu Yongyi and Jiang Jiawei. Among them, Mr. Jiang will share his analysis of the works of three Huagai Architect projects, the Great Shanghai Theater (1932), the Zhejiang Industrial Bank Building (1934) and the Hezhong Library (1940). Professor Hua will share the analysis of the three works of Hudec’s architectural works, namely the Hong’en Hospital (1926), the Grand Theater (1933) and the International Hotel (1934), and discuss their influence on architectural modernity in the context of modern Shanghai.

Seeking prosperity and forging ahead in times of conflict, the legend of Huagai Architects over the past twenty years reflect the wave of social change in China during an age of transition. As a contemporaneous architect, Hudec overcame national boundaries, eras and politics in a foreign country and achieved renown status in Shanghai urban culture. This lecture strives to ring in the goals of the “China Builders” project. Let us bring you closer to the iconic figures in the history of modern architecture and provide a glance into their dreams and memories that laid the foundation for building their ideal China.


Note: [This lecture will be presented in Mandarin Chinese with simultaneous translations to English. ]

This event is free to public via Zoom but advance registration is required. 

About the Speakers

HUA Xiahong explores the multiplicity of expression in architectural modernity across historic Shanghai into modern day creations. He most notably analyzes the architectural design of the Country Hospital (1926), the Grand Theater (1933), and the Park Hotel (1934) designed by the Hungarian architect L. E. Hudec (1893-1958).

JIANG Chunqian examines the work of Allied Architects and their many modalities in the context of modern Shanghai. His work navigates architectural design of the Metropol Theatre (1932),the National Commercial Bank, Ltd. (1934), and Hezhong Library (1940).

︎ ︎  @HarvardCAMLab