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Big Brands Are Setting Up Shop in Beijing's Art District

“This is the most creative place I’ve ever worked,” says Saad Metz, Audi AG’s head of research and development in Beijing, looking out of his ceiling-to-floor window at a landscape of metal pipes and old factories. “Here we get inspired by artists every day.”

The German automaker set up its China design center in Beijing’s 798 art district, a sprawl of old military electronics facilities taken over in the early 2000s by the capital’s booming contemporary art scene and now being invaded by design companies and entrepreneurs.