A bosom friend afar brings distant land near. The Oversea album shares the lives of Chinese living abroad with all. The No.109 episode is about Minquan Wang who graduated from Tsinghua University and Yale University, and is now working for KPF New York.
Why going abroad?
Mostly because of a naïve curiosity about architecture. Frankly speaking I scarcely had much if any plan.
What impressed you the most when you are abroad?
从罗马回来以后就去纽约KPF实习，每天坐地铁到时代广场，公司楼下是Bryant Park，周围都是中城大厂上班族，也有不少流浪汉举个纸牌行乞。有一挺整洁的长发男子混迹其中，纸牌上并没说什么悲惨身世，只写了句“I just like holding a cardboard”。过两日，又见这人，披着纸牌跟上班族搭讪，牌上写:”Life is a joke, quit your job, buy a van, it’s not too late.” 又两日，发现他突然剃成光头静坐在大楼门口。这以后就没见过他了。
It was during Yale’s 2018 summer seminar in Rome. I went to draw Borromini’s San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane. Lunchtime came and I was biting on my sandwich in the park outside the church. A local grandpa came by and saw my drawing board – it was barely started, with only a rough shape. He immediately asked me if I was drawing San Carlo. He then started merrily chatting, telling me how Borromini was a stonemason when he was a kid, and he was fond of using graphite. He also let me pay attention to the Sant’Andrea al Quirinale next door, which was the work of Bernini, Borromini’s lifetime rival. Bernini was a proponent of the Pope and Counter-Reformation, therefore Sant’Andrea was lusciously decorated, whereas San Carlo hardly had any. He went on and on until I found myself listening to his account on how irrational numbers and calculus pave way for Baroque architecture. After the chat, he went on strolling.
Right after the summer in Rome I went on my internship at KPF New York. Every day I took the 1 train to the Time Square. The Bryant Park is right down our office building, with a lot of midtown corporate men and women passing by. There were also quite a few homeless people who would put up a cardboard with their misfortunes written on it asking for money. Somehow, a neat handsome long-haired fellow was amid the homeless. His cardboard says: “I just like holding a cardboard.” A few days later, I saw the man again, he was chatting up random corporate guys on the street, with a cardboard over his shoulders saying: “Life is a joke, quit your job, buy a van, it’s not too late.” A couple of days past and I saw him yet again, suddenly shaved bald and sitting quietly by our office building’s entrance. That was the last time I saw him.
What do you miss the most about China?
Family and friends. Tacit contextual understandings.
Will you come back? Why?
Absolutely. My impression is that in the US, problems are well encapsulated and channeled, but hardly solved, whereas in China there are stronger attempts to come to resolutions, despite the means and methods being often crude.
Is it more distinct to view China in a different environment after going abroad? Any thought?
Hard to say. In fact, having left for a while, I am often stroke by this illusion that my home has now become the other. While the knowledge has diminished, the defamiliarization and discomfort therein are stimulative to observations and thoughts. I guess one gets assimilated by his system in one way or another over time. It’s important to distance oneself a little from everything and never take them for granted. Don’t get too comfortable.
What are the educational characteristics of your school?
Advanced Studio和选修研讨课轮番请各路大牌，意识形态可选范围很广，从新古典主义到Michael Young、Mark Foster Gage等等。但耶鲁也有传统的一面，会耳濡目染古典知识基础。主张透过物质表观洞悉内层形式空间秩序，提倡理性分析严谨构建，不鼓励肤浅的形式操弄；同时也关注建筑的智识属性，大量灌输各类旁系领域的学术参照，把设计作为论述的延申，不会囿于单纯为了盖个好房子而做设计（但能把房子做好还是基本的）。这种对建筑学本体性与智识外延的双重关切构成了教学的核心。
Yale thrives on a strong foundation of liberal arts. Many students in the School of Architecture would take courses at the School of Drama and the School of Arts next door and so on. The School of Architecture is very idealistic and scholarly predisposed. The Rudolph Hall appears savage from the outside, but the interior is amicable. Peer competition is fierce, but people get along well. Everyone knows everyone. Most people came across as pure human beings. YSOA was neither a corporate nor an arena but rather a home to me.
You can shop for the full spectrum of ideologies in the Advanced Studios and electives, ranging from New Classicism to Michael Young, Mark Foster Gage and the likes. Regardless of these, Yale has its way of being traditional. The school imbues you in a knowledge base of the Classical. It is advocated to see through the material surface the innate order of space and forms. Rational analytics and rigorous constructions were recognized, while shallow manipulations and mannerism were discouraged. Architecture’s intellectual implications were equally underlined, with heavy exposure to scholarly references. Design is treated as the extension of discourse. Making a good building just for the sake of it was never the goal, though being able to make a good building is prerequisite. The dual concern for architecture’s autonomy and intellectual engagements is at the core of Yale’s teaching.
What are the characteristics and interesting points of your firm?
Acing the commercial design international market for decades, KPF has made its name in China. KPF offers wide exposure to high-profile projects around the globe, often with top consultancy configuration and the powerful in-house technical support. These, in addition to the well-structured management and rigorous workflow, are very helpful to a junior designer’s establishment of professionalism. The firm does not endorse individualism, nor does it over-magnify personal dominance of singular design leaders. Each project success is a victory of the team and the system.
Who is your favorite artist (in wider range such as art, music, movie)? What is the influence?
一是福柯和Guy Debord，二是Giuseppe Terragni (好像都算不上艺术家)。
Foucault and Guy Debord, and after them, Giuseppe Terragni. None of them are artists admittedly.
Foucault wrote much on power and space. The “space” he talks about is rather a state of social relation, but it often works in tandem with physical space. Guy Debord analyzed a plethora of phenomena regarding the commodity society and mass media. I grew up in a typical Chinese work unit, and underwent quite a polar-opposite change as I walked my path of studying and working abroad. It might be attributable to these experiences that I became sensitive to the politics of space, consumerism, and the disciplinary power, etc.
Terragni had an influence on me with his almost mathematical formal rationalization. But his method was not devoid of emotional charge. His Danteum told the story of Divine Comedy with nothing but ideal geometry and numerology. I was much inspired.
In his Danteum proposal, Giuseppe Terragni reconstructed Dante’s imaginative journey
in the Divine Comedy with ideal geometry and numerology
What fascinates viewers the most in your portfolio in your opinion?
我喜欢有系统复杂度的设计想法，相对于simple & elegant，更偏好elaborate & sophisticated。享受那种彻底掌控和完成某物的快感。我觉得看建筑与其关注其物质结果，倒不如凝视结果背后的内在机制和社会关系，甚至也包括建筑师特定表现的结构性原因，或者说建筑专业的权力再生产。
I like design ideas with systemic complexity. I’d rather be elaborate and sophisticated than simple and elegant. I enjoy having total completion and control over something. I often feel that to think about architecture, one would better be contemplating the inherent mechanisms and social interactions producing its material outcomes, than such outcomes themselves. One could even go one step further to investigate the structural reason for certain behavioral patterns of architects, or in other words, the power reproduction of the architectural profession.
I had my days of heavily relying on design intuition, but a few encounters at Tsinghua urged me to be alerted of this reliance. In the absence of sufficient justification, I would rather contain personalization in exchange for a conceptual lucidity. After a while I came to realize that this was a limitation of its own kind, which then pushed me to liberate my nature from time to time. So I guess I am kind of in this constant tension between sense and sensibility.
When did you start to follow gooood? Any suggestions?
I have been a reader since undergraduate days. gooood goes beyond images to offer in-depth organized thoughts. Many of my real-life acquaintances would flash by from time to time here. To say that gooood accompanied my journey is without exaggeration. Best wishes to gooood’s future endeavors!
W O R K
Détournement of Allure
Partner: Istvan van Vianen
Critic: Emre Arolat, Gonca Paşolar, Kyle Dugdale
2018 H.I. Feldman Prize Nomination
迈阿密滩沿岸被商业开发重度染指，近年来涌现了很多高端住宅和酒店，其中不乏H&M, OMA, Renzo Piano等大佬作品。海滩原本是迈阿密重要的文化符号和市民空间，但业主们都执着于抬高身价、塑造特权，彼此间持不合作态度，以致竞相画地为牢、海滩支离破碎。Studio的预设是说假如有一强大开发商同时拿下相连六个地块都交给建筑师你执行，功能还做商住酒店混合开发，你要怎么挑战现状。
The shorefront of Miami Beach intensively meddled by commercial developments, mostly luxury hotels and condo/ apartments, some of which the works of the class of H&M, OMA, Renzo Piano. The beachfront is an important cultural symbol and civic space in Miami. The developers though were keen to each privilege their properties with a non-cooperative mentality, to the point that everyone started building up fences, chopping the beachfront in pieces. The studio assumes that a powerful developer takes six adjacent blocks, and hands them all over to you, the Architect. Given the same mix-use residence/hospitality program, what would you do?
My partner and I considered such assumption unrealistic. We decided instead to acknowledge that the six blocks were still each owned and operated by individual owners (except a parking ground attributed to the city). Our mission was to play the game with these developers with something that they buy into but still improves public life.
The visitor experience of these developments is rather weird: People escape to Miami in search of the so-called Miami allure: parties, festivals, or simply chilling amid assorted Miami people. With all the top amenities where they stay, people end up spending most of their time out for that Miaminess. Yet the zero-sum game of private developments undermines sharing. When everyone is erecting fences, the one who opens up will be the first to lose the game. This is the paradox.
▼迈阿密感到底是怎么回事？What makes Miaminess?
▼期望与现实，Expectation vs. Reality
We want to challenge this paradox with a mediating structure. We propose that each property remains independently operated, while the spatial configuration stays consistent with tower (guest rooms) combined with a cascading podium (retail & amenities). The amenities are profit oriented as well. A continuous open path starts from the street level and connects all amenities to the higher floors, where it merges into a circular structure nicknamed the Halo. Contrary to the privatized and profit-driven nature of each individual properties, the Halo is built and managed by the city, carrying neutral non-profit spaces, such as exhibitions, forums, and other public events.
The Halo becomes an ultimate urban destination and remodels the topology of the public/private domain, pumping visitors up through the paths embedded in each individual property. The process generates consumptions, which feed into the owners’ profits, encouraging them to keep their doors open. The Halo merges all properties in parallel. A non-cooperative owner risks loss of visitor traffic at his rival’s gains. The Halo reserves its own independent accessibilities, and remains functional even if all connected properties rejects cooperation.
▼公共序列及天使环和各地块间的界面，The public flow and the interfaces
▼首层平面图，Ground floor plan
▼天使环层平面图，The Halo level plan
To make the project convincing enough we worked quite a bit on organizing the program groups and circulations. We also investigated the registered historical heritages and the existing structures worth preserving as a reference for each block’s basic layout and design language. In contrast, the Halo manifests itself as clean and neutral. It is also designed in a way that shows not only to those within the structure but also the external urban environment.
All in all, we took this as a thought experiment to rebel against the market by hijacking its own logics. After the studio finals, a friend questioned how we drew the fine line between hijacking and collusion. I agred with her. We could have walked the wire better.
Critic: Florencia Pita, Jackilin Hah Bloom, Miroslava Brooks
In the documentary Brillo Box (3¢ Off), when Andy Warhol is asked why he turned a common Brillo box into sculpture, he casually responded “because it’s easy to do”. Appropriation yields irony which is easily interpreted, but is paradoxically difficult to attain without an alignment of particular social, economic and cultural forces at play. This studio investigated the appropriation, misinterpretation, and abstraction of the ready-made as tools to generate formal agendas in the adaptive reuse of a warehouse building in Culver City.
▼安迪·沃霍尔，布里洛肥皂盒，1964 Andy Warhol, Brillo Box, 1964
The first exercise of the studio involved each student gathering daily items at their intuition, pretending to be the curator of one’s own collection. The items were documented as materials for 2D collages, which then escalated to 3D collages using real objects. The 3D collages were subsequently reproduced as thermoforms. The intention of the exercise was to distill meaningful formal/programmatic arguments from unconscious appropriations. The final thermoforming offered an additional layer of abstraction by dematerializing and flattening the assembly.
▼三维实物拼贴与热塑模型，3D collages to scale and thermoformed models
Referencing the thermoform, a 2D drawing concluded the formal statements. The drawing is not a simple material description of the previous iterations, but rather to uncover the implied order and significance of the formal system with the intentional misinterpretation found in repeated transpositions between objectivity and abstraction. In my collections and collages, I tended to industrial products with highly specific shapes. The sharpness, linearity and hinges implied a tension between exclusivity and coordination, Taking this thread, I investigated the dialectics between the constituent parts and a cohesive whole. By disassembling and reassembling, juxtaposing and obscuring, and by manipulating outlines and volumes, I aimed to produce a flickering state between individual recognizability and a new aggregation with its own agency.
▼图纸作为形式陈述，Drawing as formal statement
这之后大家去了LA Culver City的一个历史工业区，每人认领一座废旧仓库，画成展开图（developed surface）作为“画布”来实施前述的形式章程，作为建筑原型。展开图是18世纪建筑师爱用的一种制图方式，意在通过二维投影的组合（而非透视法）表达三维空间。
▼Robert Adam 1761年为锡永宫大厅作的展开图
Robert Adam’s 1761 developed surface drawing of the Great Hall at Syon House
The studio then visited an industrial district in Culver City, each student claiming a warehouse to be drawn into a developed surface drawing as the canvas for the deployment of the collage and abstraction method explored in previous iterations. The developed surface is a drawing technique favored by 18th century architects which describes three-dimensionality in the absence of perspectival.
▼仓库展开图拼贴图解，Warehouse developed surface collage diagram
Appropriated forms from the site in addition to the item collection
▼仓库展开图，Warehouse developed surface drawing
However, just as Robin Evans’ pertinent comment, this is a drawing technique highly relying on subjective reconstruction of the space. The fictional collaging using Culver City warehouse developed surfaces operates without an authentic reference. Therefore, the collages’ 3d reconstructions are much more a reproduction of space based on drawing conventions, than the reverse-engineering of representations. It is neither purely subjective speculations nor mechanical formations, but rather a negotiation between the design agency and the autonomy of drawing conventions.
▼办公室首层平面，Office ground floor plan
Studio的大前提是办公空间。考虑到此前对个体与整体的讨论，我把建筑原型发展成了一个概念艺术工作室。CG和VFX行业人员流动性大，需要不同专业背景和创作习惯迥异的团队互相协作完成共同愿景。工作室用空间原型中的基本形体（figure）提供了一系列吻合高度特定工作情景的小口袋， 一些拟合基本形体的可使用表面（programmed surface）将其层叠在一起，去实现游弋于个人泡泡与连贯工作流之间游弋的工作景观。
The studio prerequisites the spaces to be offices. Considering my argument on individuals vs. aggregation, my prototype was developed into a concept art studio. The CG and VFX industry faces high turn-over rates, and often relies on individuals with disparate backgrounds, styles, and preferences to collaborate on a common vision. Reflected on the spatial configurations, the concept art studio offers a range of figural niches befitting highly particular scenarios, which are weaved by transitional programmed surfaces approximating their figures. A work landscape flickering between individual work spheres and cohesive workflow is thereby achieved.
Partner: Winston Yuen
Critic: Peter Eisenman, Anthony Gagliardi
Studio选址于纽黑文Oak Street Connector。这里被包围于纽黑文历史规划的九宫格、The Hills社区小尺度肌理、Union Station火车站、与郊区设施大盒子之间，是城市空间脉络交汇的三角地。上世纪60年代的城市更新中，34号高速公路穿越此地将南北两侧的市区彻底切开。此举加剧了此后数十年纽黑文的衰退，也造就了Oak Street Connector的城市断裂带。
This project was from Eisenman’s studio during my last semester at Yale. As Eisenman’s used-to-be fan, I was determined to go with it despite the studio being poorly ranked among my classmates’ Advanced Studio lottery choices.
The studio’s site was at New Haven’s Oak Street Connector. Flanked by the Nine Square of New Haven’s historical planning, the fine texture of the Hill neighborhood, the Union Station train yard, and the giant suburbia boxes, the Oak Street Connector sits at the delta where urban fabrics collide. In the 1960s urban renewal, Route 34 went across this site, cutting the city apart. The decision contributed to New Haven’s decline in the following decades, and rendered the Oak Street Connector an urban fracture.
▼城市更新前后的纽黑文，New Haven before and after the urban renewal
Eisenman的理论近年来在逐渐从形式主义向“弱形式”转变。他借用了Theodor Adorno有关美学的论文《Ohne Leitbild》作studio的主题。Ohne Leitbild直译为“脱离模型”（Without a Model）。“模型”可以简单理解为艺术的形式化章程，比如巴洛克音乐和七言律诗。但“模型”的存在本身亦是谈“脱离模型”的先决条件。Adorno提倡艺术要有自律、要与现实保持距离，而这种自律性依托于形式；然而仅遵循形式自律的艺术又往往是专制、排他、对现实漠不关心的。
Adorno理想中的艺术作品应同时调谐这两种特质。Eisenman把这一论点类比到建筑领域，主张既要应用形式化方法，又要批判形式化的独裁与局限。为此，studio首先集体研究了大批建筑历史上出现过的建筑与城市形式模型，包括科林·罗的拼贴城市、罗西的类比城市、OMA的拉维莱特公园和毯式建筑等。先用图解理清形式模型的要素与章程（类似formal analysis），然后轮番强加到纽黑文Oak Street Connector地段，以揭露出模型的矛盾与缺陷。以此为契机去批判与改造模型，直至达到Eisenman口中的“弱化模型” （debilitated model）。
▼O.M. Ungers的一些作品，A survey of O.M. Ungers’ works
Eisenman’s theory took a turn from formalism to weak forms in recent years. The studio borrowed from Theodor Adorno’s treatise on aesthetics, Ohne Leitbild, which translates to “Without a Model”. The Model describes the formalized protocols in art (e.g. Baroque music and seven-character octave). Ironically, to talk about “Without a Model” necessitate the presence of the Model in the very first place. Adorno advocates for an autonomous art, one which distances itself from reality. Such autonomy resides in form. Yet a formally autonomous art is often totalizing, exclusive, and disengaged.
Ohne Leibild was the dual criticism of both trends, with Adorno’s idealized art form reconciling the two. Eisenman drew an architectural analog to propose both formalization and the criticism of its totality. To this end, the studio collectively studied a spectrum of historical architectural and urban Models, some of which included Colin Rowe’s Collage City, Aldo Rossi’s Analogical City, OMA’s Parc de la Villette and Mat Builidng, etc. We diagrammatically clarified the elements and protocols of the Models (i.e. formal analysis), and forced them upon the Oak Street Connector site. The process exposes contradictions, creating an entry for criticizing and modifying them as Debilitated Models in Eisenman’s terms.
▼对Ungers的Lichterfelde竞赛提案的形式模型分析，Model analysis of Ungers’ Berlin Lichterfelde competition entry
我和队友最终选择了O.M. Ungers在柏林Lichterfelde住区的竞赛提案作为模型。这是一个基于框架+元件+网格的强调内在凝聚力的空间范式。我们使用Oak Street Connector地段的实际肌理去扭曲它的框架原型，并试图通过与周边环境的互文作为元件形体尺度调整的依据，而网格则顺应空间脉络以交织叠加的方式呈现。此外，框架的主轴被从场地内部挪到边界，从而使框架从强调内在凝聚力转变为新建区与既存区交融的界面。
My partner and I picked O.M. Ungers’ Berlin Lichterfelde competition entry as the Model. The Model is based on the trinity of framework +components +grid, reinforcing internal structurality and cohesion. We distorted the framework with the fabric of the site, and contextualized the components with the scale and form found in adjacency. The grids, following the flow of spaces, manifest themselves as serial overlays. In addition, the spine of the framework was relocated from the site’s interior to its boundary, transforming the framework an interface for the new constructions to blend into what exists.
▼以地段的实际情况去削弱形式模型，Debilitating the Model with the site’s actualities
▼首层平面图，Ground Floor Plan
▼首层平面图局部Ground Floor Plan zoom-in
The Church Street to the west of the site is shaped as a retail and event corridor over the Route 34 scar. The programmatic decisions reciprocally informed the formal performances on smaller scales.
This studio took a turn from Eisenman’s previous pedagogy. Choosing an urban site at the crossfire of a multitude of social dynamics has dictated that realistic concerns shall penetrate the indifference of formalism. Peter was adamant about remaining formally disciplined while debilitating the Models simultaneously. He arguable set up an extortionately high standard for the studio and himself. Furthermore, many models studied in the studio demonstrated the entanglement between formal prescriptions and their programmatic involvement (e.g., Parc de la Villette) or cultural implications (e.g., Analogous City). To deprive the Model of these external engagements during initial studies would preclude a resolute criticism. The final review jury unequivocally agreed that the studio was more of an expansion than a critique of the Models.
Partner: Istvan van Vianen
Critic: Edward Mitchell, Aniket Shahane
2017 H.I. Feldman Prize Winner
为了调解复杂的社会冲突，我和队友构想了一个半企事业半职教的机构，称之为格洛斯特海事产业园（Gloucester Maritime Trade Campus, GMTC）。这一系统为当地若干冲突利益方提供了博弈的框架：小镇的既有海事产业设施被选择性升级，维持其实际生产属性，仍由当地社区运营；外来务工移民被招募为生产设施的学徒，贡献劳力换取职业教育；这一符合Gloucester真实面貌的生产过程被呈现给观光客，使其无需在 “死历史“中体验当地文化；外来资本充当产业园金主，而生产设施与旅游观光业的部分收入成为其盈利来源。
Gloucester is a New England shoreside town near Boston with deep maritime traditions. In recent years the town is under siege: the traditional industries are falling out of date, while the local culture is encroached by kitsch tourism developments. The local communities are losing their members, while an influx of immigrants seeking job and training opportunities is seen.
To reconcile the complexity of conflicts, my partner and I conceived an institution that functions as a combination of enterprise and vocational education platform. We call it the Gloucester Maritime Trade Campus (GMTC). The institution offers a framework of negotiation between the conflicting interest groups: The existing maritime facilities were selectively upgraded to maintain their productivity, and still run by the local community; The immigrants were recruited as the apprentices in the production facilities, contributing their labor in exchange for vocational education; The process is presented to visitors, allowing them to experience the true rusty Gloucester instead of a dead history; Big capitals fund the campus, taking part of its profit in return.
整个城镇机构的运作是建立在若干利益群体互相利用的基础上的。我们无意描绘童话式的理想化图景；恰相反，我们预期到各群体之间的摩擦。然而GMTC试图维系的是一种制衡状态：没有任何一方能彻底主导小镇发展的未来，而小镇的本貌得以延续 – 既不是作为千人一面的度假地，也不是作为博物馆中的文化化石。为了传达这一愿景，项目最终展示包含了四种不同的参与者视角，呈现他们的私心、疑虑、争执、与接受。
作为一个城市项目提案，具体的建筑解决方案反而是次要的，而核心在于系统设计及其编织的社会关系。项目斩获建院2017年度最优Advanced Studio项目奖H.I. Feldman Prize。
The campus run on the premise that the various groups take advantage of each other. We had no intention to depict a fairytale. Quite the contrary, we expect frictions between the social groups. However, what GMTC strives form is an equilibrium: no single party dominates the town’s future, whereas the town is allowed to extend itself, not as generic tourism resort nor a cultural fossil in museums, but with its true living characters. To deliver this vision, the project is presented with four contending perspectives of the parties involved, showing their selfishness, doubts, contentions, and acceptance.
As an urban proposal, the specific architectural solutions were secondary, while the design of the system with its orchestration of relationships sits at the core. The project was awarded the 2017 H.I. Feldman Prize, YSOA’s annual award for the best Advanced Studio project.
The Sun also Rises
Partner: Xiyao Wang
A personal project that my friend and I did for fun. The project is a museum named after Wen Jiang’s movie of the same title. Back in those days I was obsessed with Terragni-styled formalization and deconstructivist texts such as A Lover’s Discourse. The project intended to locate a text of non-linear narrative, map its narrative structure with space, and thereby reconstruct the text in architecture. Compared to the structurality that the text offers, the story itself was secondary. My ambition was to rebuild the film‘s procession with pure spatiality, while rejecting figural scenography.
▼叙事结构图解，Narrative structure diagraming
As a start, the project dismantled the narrative elements of The Sun also Rises. The film includes four independent yet interrelated episodes, each of which consists of several key events. These events were categorized into four types according to the situation it places the protagonists in. The four event types were analogized as four spatial types, which inversely reforms the four episodes and subsequently the whole story’s progression.
The four episodes followed an inherent timeline. However, the director rearranged their sequence following the movie’s narrative line. The narrative line represents the director’s stream of consciousness, whereas the timeline reflects facts and logics. These two threads were transposed into the museum’s two visiting sequences and the dual layering of each spatial unit. While following the narrative line, the visitor plays the part of the movie characters to walk through a series of seemingly absurd and incoherent events in an immersive experience; yet while following the timeline, the visitor gains a privileged view over the re-examined sessions, thereby coming to understand their causality and transition from the actor to the spectator.
▼事件类型与空间类型映射，Mapping between event typology and spatial typology
▼四个子故事的空间重建，Rebuilding the four episodes with space
▼空间序列组合，Spatial sequence formation
To achieve the transition between the timeline and the narrative line, a space behind the main exhibition sessions is dedicated to the redirection of circulation (the Chamber of Redirection). Ultimately, the space was a programming of events, with the Chamber of Redirection a rerouting device. The section resulting therein became a candid projection of the narrative structure.
▼重定向厅，Chamber of Redirection
Capital Cemetery Complex
Partner: Xudong Sun, Zijian Wang
This was a radical fictional project. Capital Cemetery Complex houses the remains of deceased Beijing citizens born between 1935 and 2050. It resists meta-narratives with the compilation of individual memories, providing raw materials for open interpretations of the city’s Zeitgeist.
The cemetery’s fundamental function is to preserve the identity of the deceased. What and who defines that identity? In the Capital Cemetery Complex, each deceased person’s identity is deflected into three facets: the physical remains, the personal life, and the social image. The ashes of the deceased lend index to his physical presence, while his personal belongings reflect his personal life. The citizen profile, on the other hands, is the system’s statement of such a person. The Capital Cemetery Complex thus became of a facility storing these three classes of items.
▼新中国历史与出生人口波动的对照，Mapping PRC history and birth population
▼逝者个人形象的三重映照，Three reflections of the personal image of the deceased
The project site sits between the Forbidden City and the adjacent old Beijing courtyard houses fabrics. It traverses the Chang’an Street and the Forbiden City’s moat, and sits across the Ancestral Temple and the Imperial Archive, allowing pedestrians to stroll around at will. Most of the project carves down into the ground, manifesting itself as a trench. The Forbidden City and the courtyard houses demarcate the border between power and secularity. The Ancestral Temple was Ming and Qing dynasty’s ritual tomb. The Imperial Archive houses royal artifacts. They are one form or another of authoritarian narratives. Yet, the Capital Cemetery Complex is dedicated to the people.
The Cemetery Complex’s axis extends along the timeline from 1935 to 2050. Columbarium sit above grade, while the personal item depository crouch underground. Both are designed as modular expandable structures. Population records lends reference to their scale. Corresponding to the year 2010, the planned year of deployment of the project where the past and the future intersect, an archive center is set. It also serves visitor reception purpose.
The bereaved go through a ritualistic process when submitting the items of the deceased. They are first required to insert the citizen profile of the deceased in the designated slots of the Archive, after which they shall hand over the personal items to the delivering mechanism of the facility. The mechanics classify and transport the items to corresponding depository units. The bereaved are encouraged to witness this process at the Central Rift outside.
The average citizen, however, is allowed to freely stroll the columbarium above grade and the depository along the Rift. As visitors walk through the entire facility’s axis, a sense of vicissitude is found, where the pixels of individual memories start forming a historical picture of its own account. The facility does not setup organized “theme exhibitions” or official interpretations of history by any means. It is up to the visitors what they make of the materials.
▼中央裂谷，The Central Rift
▼档案中心，骨灰堂，与遗物展陈，The Archive, the columbarium, and the personal item depository
For the bereaved, the programmed and mechanical separation of the three reflections of one’s identity serves as a metaphor of the alienation of the “natural person”. The Archive’s isolation and categorization of individuals was the animation of institutionalized disciplinary power. On the other hand, from an urban perspective, the project provides a series of infrastructures overcoming the city’s existing barriers and constructs a civil space that sheds light on open interpretations of history and collectivity. The potentially inconsistent messages provided by the archive, the columbarium, and the depository also lend themselves as indexes to critiques.
▼传递机械笼，The delivering cage
▼传递机械示意图，The delivering mechanisms
Critic: G. Knight, M. Brooks, S. Harby, K. Dugdale
Some bits and pieces of drawings during the Rome Seminar. Every single day at Rome was spent sketching. Everyone in the class went through a few sketchbooks. The seminar was concluded with a final drawing project, My drawing studied San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane by Borromini.
The space of San Carlo came across as hard to grasp at a glimpse, but the interior cornice line was a frank give-away of its geometry. At the beginning of the drawing, such cornice line was thus intuitively traced. Upon such framework, various layers of observations were assembled, some of which being rigorous surveying of scales and compositions, while some others delineating impressionistic moments. Upward and downward, in and out, solid and void were blended into each other at improvision, resulting in an animated image condensing my chronic experience of the architecture over several days’ span.
▼被展开的圣卡罗堂，San Carlo Unfolded
▼圣卡罗堂一隅，San Carlo vignette
▼初次到访圣卡罗堂时画的草图，Study sketches upon first visit at San Carlo
此外还有一些平常游览城市时的写生。大多数都是在跟着同学老师窜来窜去、被游客挤来挤去的间隙画的。罗马小学期这门课的要旨是 ”to draw is to see”：真的看见了才画的出来。希望这些片段能折射出一些个人视角吧。
In addition, here are some bits and pieces of daily sketches. Most of these were done in the few minutes’ worth of time while tumbling with the class or getting carried away in the swarm of tourists. The Rome Seminar is based on the belief that “to draw is to see”. Hopefully these fragments tell something about my personal perspectives.
▼一些平时的写生作品，Some of daily sketches by Wang