Former migrant worker Xiao Jiguo becomes famous in China for looking like Barack Obama

jiguoNext Shark (by Riley Schatzle): 

Xiao Jiguo is a 29-year-old former migrant worker from Guangzhou, China, who now makes a living by exploiting the fact that he looks almost exactly like Barack Obama.

Over the last four years, Jiguo has committed to his doppleganger career by studying hundreds of videos of the United States president, memorizing his inauguration speech, shaping his eyebrows and even getting plastic surgery to enhance his Obama-like facial features.

ChineseObama_4

Jiguo told the Global Times:

“In order to imitate Obama, besides waxing [his] eyebrows, he only needs a shirt, a tie and a black suit to get by, anywhere.”

While Jiguo has always borne a striking resemblance to the U.S. President, it wasn’t until 2012 when he became famous for his ability to impersonate President Obama on the TV talent contest, ”Chinese Dream Show,” according to People’s Daily Online.

Jiguo’s new comedy series centering around his Obama impersonation, “Obama Goes on Dates,” started in May and has received positive feedback. Jiguo says he never wants to go back to being a waiter but rather wants to get to a point in his career where he can act and write his own music.

ChineseObama_5ChineseObama_dual_1

Chinese tourists flock to Japan for the sushi, the shopping and the fresh air…despite tensions

 

Millions go to sample their neighbour’s blue skies and clean air\
The Independent:

Chinese tourists come to Japan for the sushi and for the shopping. But, increasingly, they’re also coming for one thing that money can’t buy: fresh air.

The blue sky and the clean air are great. They’re something we don’t have at home,” said Xu Jun, an agent for a steel trading company from Guangzhou, a huge manufacturing city in southern China that is blighted by pollution. Mr Xu was visiting the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido this month.

Over the previous two weeks, the Xu family had been to outdoor hot springs, taken an ice-breaker ship along the frozen coast and spotted some of the island’s famous wild red-crowned cranes.

They, like several million other Chinese, are beating a path to the Land of the Rising Sun.

The number of tourists coming to Japan from China went up 83 per cent in 2014, compared with the year before that. That put China in third place, behind only Taiwan and South Korea, as a source of visitors.

This is despite the political tensions between the two countries over disputed territories, and an official Japanese attempt to play down its wartime aggression against neighbouring countries, including China.

Tokyo is perennially popular, with its glitzy shopping districts and Disneyland resort, but in winter, about half the Chinese tourists visiting Japan go to Hokkaido, a sparsely populated island renowned for its wide-open spaces and top-notch seafood. Visitor numbers have skyrocketed since the 2008 release of the Chinese movie If You Are the One, which showcased Hokkaido’s natural beauty.

The first thing Chinese people do after they land is to breathe deeply,” said He Wenfan, of the Japan Tourism Board’s Chinese-language website. “People say, ‘I can finally breathe!’ ”

This Chinese Tesla killer has a fish tank in the back seat!

gac-witstar

RocketNews 24/Business Insider:

The Tesla Model X will be terrific and Google’s autonomous egg car will change the world.

But neither can match the awesomeness of China’s GAC WitStar that was introduced this week at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show. Not only does China’s Model X lookalike feature a range-extended electric powertrain and autonomous drive capabilities — it’s also equipped with a fish tank!

That’s right — a fish tank! Not since the heyday of “Pimp My Ride” have we seen such aquatic awesomeness in an car. An automotive aquarium! And all of this at the Detroit Auto Show no less.

The WitStar is the latest concept from Guangzhou-based GAC Motors. The futuristic crossover SUV is built on a sedan platform and has a electric driving range of more than 62 miles, reports Motor Trend. When the 13 kWh lithium-ion battery runs dry, the WitStar’s onboard 1.0 liter four-cylinder gasoline power generator will kick in — Chevy Volt-style — to extend the total range to 370 miles. This powertrain setup is expected to achieve 117 mpg.

 

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In addition to the hybrid-electric powertrain, the WitStar’s lineup of autonomous drive tech is also pretty darn impressive. According to Motor Trend, the car will be equipped with a self-driving system featuring laser radar, a high-speed CCD camera, and infrared camera, and GPS.

The car magazine further reports that all data gathered by the sensors, cameras, and GPS system will be amalgamated to create a real-time 3D map of the area around the vehicle. The information will also be used to control various vehicle drive functions, such as acceleration, steering, and braking. Pretty cool.

As for the fish tank, it’s located between the concept’s rear seats, in place of the armrest. Thankfully, GAC decided to used plastic fish instead of the real thing.

Because the last thing anyone wants to see is dead goldfish floating around a concept car.

gac-witstar

The fish tank is the attention-getting feature of the WitStar interior. However, the overall pleasantness of the concept’s “lounge-style” interior shouldn’t be discounted. Everything looks sleek, futuristic, and surprisingly restrained.

The WitStar’s defining exterior feature is the pair of massive, Tesla Model X-esque gullwing doors. (Tesla prefers to call them “falcon wings” on the X).

GAC is one of China’s largest automakers. The company currently markets a line of passenger vehicles under the Trumpchi brand. GAC also operates multiple joint-venture manufacturing operations in conjunction with Honda, Toyota, Mitsubishi, and Fiat.

gac-witstar-2

Bentu Design & Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts students create a concrete sofa

Mysterious Naruto inflatable toad sculpture appears in China

Mysterious Naruto Balloon Appears in China

Kotaku:

Earlier today, a strange sight appeared in the Pearl River Delta area of Guangzhou. A giant blow up toad smoking a pipe is seen tied down near Guangzhou’s Canton tower.

According to Sina games, the giant toad is a tribute to the 15 year-old Naruto comic series that just came to an end last week. Sina games talked to a worker at the site who said that the balloon was put up by fans who wanted to commemorate the series conclusion.

The same construction worker claims that the toad weighs in somewhere around 2 tons.

Mysterious Naruto Balloon Appears in China

The toad is a character from the series called Gamabunta. He’s a giant toad that’s summoned by the series’ titular character and his father, the fourth Hokage. The character also plays a fairly important role in the series as one of the symbols of the “three ninja of the leaf.”

According to Sina, since the debut of the toad in Guangzhou, fans have been lining up to take selfies with it. Course, this version of Gamabunta is much less surly than his manga counterpart, even if he’s just about as large. One intrepid fan has even uploaded the toad onto Tencent maps! You can check out the frog and its surroundings here.

Mysterious Naruto Balloon Appears in China

Chinese netizens have multiple theories as to who put the balloon up. Some believe that the balloon was actually put up by fans. Some have even made a joke that this was the work of artist Florentijn Hofman, the creator of the floating yellow duck.

Others speculate that the balloon was the work of a marketing company hoping to draw up hype for the online game, Naruto Online. It’s not uncommon for Chinese video game companies to co-opt feel-good moments for publicity. C

 

Guangzhou (China) House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

 

HYPEBEAST: 

The last stop of the House of Vans Asia tour concluded in the city of Guangzhou, providing a three-day program of diverse cultural offerings to the local community, as well as tourists alike. Although Guangzhou may not be the first place to spring to mind when one thinks of creative locales in China, the illustrious city has long been leading the line in economic and cultural developments, yearning only for a platform to showcase the creativity it has to offer. House of Vans provided this platform, where multiple workshops grounded in art and expression brought together the like-minded community and even mothers who took their infants to experience the occasion.

Kicking off the first day were renowned photographers Tobin Yelland and Lele Saveri, teaching students the art of self-publishing through DIY zine classes. Shanghai art duo Idle Beats carried on the momentum by educating design and illustration students on the entire process of making a screen print, from design to creation, and finally printing a custom tote bag. Taking a different approach than to the previous House of Vans events to represent the more edgy side of expression, tattoo artists from Sunrat Tattoo in Korea and famed Chengdu-based artist Keke offered up free tattoos of which were well-received, causing local kids to line up in front of the venue from the early morning hours in a bid for some free ink.

A House of Vans event would not be complete without a slew of talented local and international music acts. Thus, the evening portion of the festivities saw Hong Kong-based punk rock drummer Kevin Boy open the stage to pave the way for Beijing indie/synth band The Big Wave. The first night was then capped off with Montreal indie dance band We Are Wolves, which ended everything off in climactic fashion and made sure the crowd stayed dancing into the early hours of the morning. Saturday night showcased a more hip-hop-laden roster as local crew Chee Productions successfully whipped the packed house into a frenzy by bringing out a surprise performance by Beijing’s MC J Fever. However, the next act that followed was arguably the highlight of the evening, where special guest Pusha T performed a full set of his most popular songs and verses, from the likes of ‘Grindin” to G.O.O.D Music tune ‘Mercy.’ The musical performances did not stop there though and DJ duo Two Fresh brought things to a close with an explosive performance. Sunday night also saw a rap-infused event and an MC battle by the Iron Mic brought together a plethora of young aspiring artists to battle it out in front of friends and family.

Notwithstanding what Vans is predominantly known for, the three-day event also provided a program of skateboarding activities open to all. Independent skate/surf photographer Leong Zhang took out a crew of young photographers to give them insights into the intricacies required for shooting skating activities. Using the Vans China/Hong Kong skate team as the subjects for the class, the participants took note of the details and angles that transform a great photo into a legendary photo. Two days of skate contests for amateurs and pros were also offered as Chongqing artist Panda and local graffiti crew Dickid created a monster 6-meter tall, Sk8-Hi-inspired set filled with a mammoth quarter-pipe as well as street obstacles painted by American artist Rich Jacobs. The much-anticipated jam-format contests brought out the pro’s representing five local skate brands: Vagabond, 8FIVE2, HKit, Symbolic and Hero, who all battled it out to take home the winnings. After impressive displays of tricks and creativity from all those involved, it was the 8FIVE2 team from Hong Kong that took the title for best street run and Shenzhen-based team Vagabond winning the best quarter-pipe jam.

Enjoy the recap above and head over to House of Vans Asia for more information regarding the events, while you can also check out recaps of the previous stops in the tour here.

 

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

Image of Guangzhou House of Vans 2014 Recap

 

Pusha T headlines the Seoul stop on the House of Vans Asia tour

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

 

Following from Shanghai, the latest leg of the House of Vans Asia took to Seoul on September 19 and 20 for a two-day pop-up concept at Hanil WarehouseGangseo-gu. Featuring over 40 artists, seminal figures in skateboarding documentary Tobin Yelland and Clint Woodside led zine-making workshops, providing an opportunity for local youth to explore self-expression via DIY approaches. Meanwhile, Los Angeles filmmaker Angela Boatwright shared intimate photographs from her ongoing documentation of East Los Angeles’s backyard punk scene. Students also learned about storytelling through film and how to tackle unfamiliar subjects with conviction. The creative spirit continued elsewhere in Lovenskate’s DIY Paper Shoes making booth and DEKAL’s silkscreen workshop, while others got creative at Vans’ #livingoffthewall project, adding colorful renditions to a large blank wall or next to the live painting artwork of Original Punk. The Sunrat Tattoo crew interpolated their deftness in body art onto leather materials and exhibited unique artworks alongside local artists SUPA CRQS who painted on huge, traditional Korean masks.

Celebrating Vans’ longstanding commitment to skateboarding, a pop-up skatepark inspired by Seoul’s landmark Namdaemum was erected in the warehouse’s center. DJs took turns on the ones and twos while Vans skate teams from Hong Kong, China and Korea showed their deftness on the four-wheeler, one-upping each other at the “Best Trick” competition, with skaters Jihoon LeeYoungjoon Park and Chris da Cahna bagging prizes.

No House of Vans is complete without a stellar line-up of music acts, and Seoul was no different. Taking stage on Friday was none other than G.O.O.D. Music signee Pusha T — a headline that attracted a mammoth queue five hours before the doors opened, alongside a guestappearanceform Seoul’s wonderboy, G-Dragon. Saturday’s agenda paid homage to Vans’ roots in hardcore and punk, with local bands Used Cassettes, New Blue Death and Juck Juck Grunzie playing out their latest garage rock anthems. San Diego psychobilly outfit The Strikers and Japan’s Radiots contributed to the high-strung list of performances, while co-headliners Las Cochinas represented the “East Los” scene, shredded into the late evening. On its second consecutive year, the latest HOV is another triumphant chapter from Vans and continues to show the capital’s appetite for art, music and creativity.

Two more stops to go for House of Vans Asia tour. Check houseofvansasia.com for the latest on Hong Kong and Guangzhou.

 

 

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Image of Pusha T Headlines the Seoul House of Vans Opening

Link

Hitachi is building the world’s fastest elevator: 95 floors in 43 seconds

 

Engadget:

 

In 2016, Hitachi will take over Toshiba‘s title as the maker of the fastest elevator in the world. The Japanese company’s slated to install two lifts that move at a swift 45mph inside China‘s Guangzhou CTF Finance Centre, currently under construction. Apparently, you can reach the 95th floor (the building will have 111 floors in all) straight from the ground in just 43 seconds on one of these zippy elevators — hardly long enough to freshen up before reaching the office. Toshiba’s current record-holding lifts in Taipei 101 (a skyscraper in Taiwan) ferry people up and down floors at only 38mph.

While you might typically associate 45mph with a relaxing Sunday drive, that speed takes on a whole new meaning when it comes to lifts. Would these speedy elevators trigger vertigo or cause passengers’ stomachs to drop like they would on a roller coaster? Construction won’t be done until 2016, so we don’t quite know. Hitachi, however, says the vertical speed demons have the technology to prevent ears from popping and to reduce any side-to-side-shaking. The company assures that its creation is perfectly safe to ride, as it’s made from heat-resistant materials.

The elevator also come with equipment (amazingly) called the “governor” which activates brakes when the system detects excessive speeds — Hitachi even built a 698-feet tower simply for testing in 2010. Room for improvement? Well, these elevators would be even better if they had Mitsubishi‘s wheelchair-friendly add-on, but well, you can’t have everything.

Check out this link:

 Hitachi is building the world’s fastest elevator: 95 floors in 43 seconds

Link

Architecture: Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completed in Guangzhou

A skyscraper shaped like a giant doughnut has been completed by Italian architect Joseph di Pasquale in Guangzhou, China.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

Located on the edge of the Pearl River, the 138-metre Guangzhou Circle was designed by Di Pasquale of Milan studio AM Project to provide an iconic headquarters for Chinese companies Guangdong Hongda Xingye Group and GDPE Guangdong Plastic Exchange.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

The architectural concept is for a building that will be immediately perceived as a native Chinese landmark using a closed and central structure instead of the usual western skyscrapers stereotype,”said the architect.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

A circle with a 50-metre diameter punctures the heart of the 33-storey structure, turning the building into a hollow circle. When reflected in the river, this shape becomes a figure of eight – a lucky number in Chinese culture.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

[It] is inspired by the strong iconic value of jade discs and numerological tradition of feng shui, in particular, the double disc of jade (bi-disk) is the royal symbol of ancient Chinese dynasty that reigned in this area around 2000 years ago,” said Di Pasquale.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

This figure also corresponds to the number eight and infinity symbol that in Chinese culture have a strong propitiatory value,” he added.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

The front and rear walls of the building are clad with copper plates, while the curved side walls are broken down into glazed rectilinear boxes.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

Elevated gardens are located within the central void.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

Here’s a project description from Joseph di Pasquale:


Guangzhou Circle (Canton), China

On December 16th 2013 the completion ceremony of the Guangzhou Circle Mansion had taken place in Guangzhou, China. It’s the Headquarter of Guangdong Hongda Xingye Group and the venue of GDPE Guangdong Plastic Exchange, the world largest stock exchange for raw plastic material with more then 40 billions euros of annual turn over.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

Local and Italian authorities will attend the ceremony including the Italian General Consul in Guangzhou mr Benedetto Latteri and the scientific responsible of the Italian Embassy in Beijing, mr Giuseppe Rao.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

The building has been designed by the Italian architect Joseph di Pasquale and his professional practice AM project from Milan that has been the winning proposal of the international architectural competition held in 2009. The total height is 138 mt for 33 floors, 85.000 square meters of floor area and about 50 million euros of global investment. The inner hole is a unique space that has no equal in the world with its almost fifty meters of diameter (48 mt).

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

The architectural concept intends to design landmark building that will be immediately perceived as a native Chinese Landmark Building using a closed and central structure instead of the usual western skyscrapers stereotype. Therefore the architecture is fully defined, and iconic, very close to the Chinese way of perceiving and understanding. It’s a sort of “urban logo” that works as a landmark in the same way that ideograms are used in the Chinese writing, instead of the alphabet.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

The architectural concept is inspired by the strong iconic value of jade discs and numerological tradition of feng shui. In particular, the double disc of jade (bi-disk) is the royal symbol of ancient Chinese dynasty that reigned in this area around 2000 years ago. The building reflected in the water of the river creates exactly the same image: a double jade disc.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

This figure also corresponds to the number 8 and infinity symbol that Chinese culture has a strong propitiatory value. Just remember how the date and time of the start of the Beijing Olympics was for the same reason fixed to 8:08 am of the ‘8-8-2008.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou
But the building is also a clear reference to the theme dear to the Italian Renaissance “quadratura del cerchio” (squaring the circle). The two circular facades in fact contain and support suspended groups of storeys that are actually “squaring” the perfect circumference of the facades in order to make the interior space orthogonal and habitable.
Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou
Front elevation – click for larger image

The 33 floors are grouped to create two rows of volumes blocks that appears from the side of the building and are progressively pushed out till an extreme 25 meters cantilever. The main interior space is the exchange hall that is located just lower then the central hole of the building. This is the heart of the entire complex and of the entire company.

Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completes in Guangzhou

The initial structural concept has been developed and tested at the wind gallery of Polytechnic of Milan, and the structural calculations and final test has been developed by the South China University of Technology (SCUT) in Guangzhou.

Check out this link:

Architecture: Doughnut-shaped skyscraper completed in Guangzhou

Video

Skating China Like Never Before – “A Tale of Four Cities” by Charles Lanceplaine

Slow motion, skateboarding, superb cinematography and exciting locations. This is exactly what is delivered in Charles Lanceplaine‘s most recent body of work “A Tale of Four Cities.”

Featuring riders Jay Meador, Cyres Wong, Liu Jia Ming, Zhang Zi Yang and Timi McMeel, the video captures street skating at its best. Seen are some brag-able sets and clean combinations, but what is equally intriguing is the way each of the four cities are showcased. Not only do you get a look at the landscape of Guangzhou, Shanghai, Wuhan and Beijing, but the expressions of the local onlookers are beautifully brought out.

Watch the video above for a better look at what it’s like to skate these four cities.