Design and the City is a podcast by reSITE, raising questions and proposing solutions for the city of the future. In the fifth episode, Yosuke Hayano, principal partner for MAD Architects, talks about Creating Emotional Connections to Nature. Always asking “How do you bring modern architecture into the future and connect humans with nature?” Hayano discusses the creative approach of the firm.
Envisioning the city of the future, MAD Architects are “committed to developing futuristic, organic, technologically advanced designs that embody a contemporary interpretation of the Eastern affinity for nature”. Based in Beijing, China, MAD Architects is an architectural design firm that pushes architecture, contemporary architecture and design with an Asian point of view, aiming to “create a space for people to connect to nature”.
The architect first starts by presenting the firm’s latest installation, the Tunnel of Light, part of the Echigo-Tsumari Triennale 2018, found at the Kiyotsu Gorge Tunnel in Japan. Unique, all projects on display at this art festival, utilized the existing landscape, blending where the art or architecture ends and nature begins. On another hand, discussing success, Hayano suggests that it resides in the process rather than in the final outcome.
How we can trigger the feeling of the people through this natural element to be connected to the context, connected to the city. I think that’s more important. It's quite difficult to find out the method, but I think that’s how we try to push our projects. -- Yosuke Hayano, principal partner for MAD Architects.
MAD architects’ approach to bringing back nature into our cities is not limited to planting more trees. In fact, the studio tries to integrate nature back into the lives of the citizens through elements that remind people of the wildlife like water surfaces or a combination of s space and natural environment.
Moreover, for the studio, the Chinese term “Shan-Shui” embodies their vision of a futuristic city that remains congruent with nature. Synonym to harmony found between human beings and the natural environment, the word drives all of the firm’s developments. Nevertheless, for Hayano, this concept does not oppose to technological advancements. On that note, he states that “we might need to observe well how this new technology or how this new way of life is making an impact on our industry architecture and urban design. Then we should have a clear vision for how the future of the city can be a space for people to enjoy, to live together instead of suffering from daily life. [Not] just only work and live, but [feel] like this place belongs to them”.
ReSITE, a global non-profit acting to improve the urban environment, launched its first podcast, Design and the City, featuring nine speakers from the reSITE 2019 REGENERATE event. Revolving around how we can use design to make cities more livable and lovable, every week, a new episode is released, featuring a new guest.