November 11th, 2014

Dragon Chi

Old "Deutsche Werkstätten" shop sign on Anfu Lu

Once I was walking on Anfu Lu and noticed a faded inscription in an elegant art-deco script peeking from underneath some air-conditioning units. After consulting with North China Hong Lists and old maps I identified a Deutsche Werkstätten shop at this address. The German company has been making and selling wooden furniture since 1898.

1102-DW Street View

"Deutsche Werkstätten Shanghai." The store was located on Route Dupleix (Anfu Lu) in 1936 and gone by 1939.

1102-DW Closeup

Looking for the traces of this firm in Shanghai I came across this image at the UWM website. This is the NW corner of Route Mercier and Rue Ratard (today's Maoming and Julu Roads):

1102-DW 1937-1941 Historic photo

This facade also appears in Ulrike Ottinger's documentary about Shanghai (that I haven't seen). An article about it says: "Deutsche Werkstätten Shanghai" (German Workshops Shanghai) can be read in large letters on a façade in a photograph with the same title, as well as in her film EXIL SHANGHAI (source).