In a time dominated by spectacular building forms and technologies, the relationship between social conditions, the built environment, and planning is dictated by forces that seem beyond our control. The politics of development and planning often suggest not only how buildings are meant to be experienced and consumed, but also thought about and designed. These larger regulatory forces often dictate the site, scale, and program of a proposed building. How can building projects respond to these structural conditions, in order to understand the relationship between culture and environment?
I live and work in Hangzhou, China, which provides a unique lens through which to ask this question. China’s transformations in the wake of revolution and industrialization have revealed the unstable relationship between modern planning systems and previously craft-based building traditions. There lies a contextualized, alternative approach to the process of modernization which is not only material but social as well.
I received my Master of Architecture from the China Academy of Art (Hangzhou) under Wang Shu, and currently work as an architect at Amateur Architecture Studio. I received both my Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Architecture from Rhode Island School of Design, where I received the Henry Fernandez Award in History and Theory. Currently I am working on both preservation and new construction in rural Zhejiang Province. I also translate history and theory essays as a way to practice my Chinese language.