In March 2005 Charles Karadimos was commissioned to design what will be one of the largest kaleidoscopes in the world in China. Traveling to the site in Qingdao, home for part of the 2008 Summer Olympics, he met with Larry Ziebarth, the main architect, the local architects, and the managers of the project, in order to best evaluate the project. A week of intense model building and discussions led up to an incredible start to the planned construction. As seen in the picture of the model, a 21 meter tall kaleidoscope will be housed in the 48 meter central tower. Work has now begun on the main complex, “Art Topia”, with an opening date set sometime in 2012.
Art-Topia is located along 1.3 kilometers of shoreline bordered by Qingdao’s largest swimming beach to the northeast and the new sculpture museum within the site’s southwest boundary. The development of this prime land is proposed as an “Art” themed leisure, recreation and entertainment park for the city of Qingdao. The theme for this concept is further enhanced by the site’s close proximity to the new Fine Art and Cultural Art Museum.
On the site of an old fishing village, a vibrant center for daytime and evening events including restaurants, entertainment, retail shopping, art galleries, working art studios, live performances, and overnight accommodations will be developed.
“Art-Topia Park” celebrates human creativity in the visual and performing arts. This is not in the form of a museum, rather it is an interactive entertainment complex which is always evolving based on the participation of its resident artists and club members and visiting guests. The theme is timeless and the subject matter is continually changing.