Beyond Architecture: 6 Young Chinese Architects Working in Alternative Careers

Beyond Architecture: 6 Young Chinese Architects Working in Alternative Careers

Architecture has never been limited to building and construction; some notable architects have contributed numerous fantastic works to the domains of fashion, furniture, jewelry, and other design. The names of young Chinese architects active in the construction industry appear in numerous fields. Crossover, extension, and exploration, young Chinese architects seek to work beyond the boundary of architecture.

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1. Architects who adore drawing

Architects who sketch appear to do the polar opposite of what architects do; architects transform drawings into reality, but they transform reality back into drawings with their brushes. They have been referred to as "Paper Architects." Indeed, they use drawings to let people see the city through their perspectives and encourage everyone to pay attention to and reflect on the type of city we live in.

Drawing Architecture Studio

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"Nan Luo Gu Xiang". Image Courtesy of DRAWING ARCHITECTURE STUDIO

In an interview, creator Li Han discussed the meaning of Drawing Architecture Studio's work, which enables us to understand ambiguous reality through extremes. Drawing Architecture Studio explores the city's traits, then enlarges, dismantles, and exaggerates them. They create cities with paintbrushes, demonstrating the relationship between people and space, as well as between people and cities. When we look at Drawing Architecture Studio's depictions, we first wonder if these colorful images are of our city. We cannot see the reality that we have noticed and the reality that we have not noticed until we carefully observe. We could experience a sensation of familiarity and unfamiliarity at the same time.

"Nan Luo Gu Xiang" extracts significant buildings and concentrates them into a single painting, an expression that mixes the real and the imaginary. Through oblique axonometry and twisted explosions, "Under the Zhengyang Gate "deconstructs and re-expresses the familiar Zhengyang Gate.

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"Under The Zhengyangmen". Image Courtesy of DRAWING ARCHITECTURE STUDIO

Drawing Architecture Studio views city mapping as a method of perception. They have become a recorder of history in a quickly rising China, where numerous things vanish without a trace. As is the case with one of their works, The Samsara of Building No.42 on Dirty Street, which recounts the fascinating reincarnation of a residential building on Beijing's Dirty Street in Sanlitun over the last decade, transforming from a residential building to a commercial district and ultimately back to a residential building.

Beijing Drawing

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"Buildings of Beijing Office, which. Image via Beijing Drawing

Beijing Drawing's works are not only about the city but also its culture. Beijing Drawing's founders, Song Zhuangzhuang and Li Mingyang, view their work as a means of rediscovering Beijing and developing a contemporary Beijing culture. When discussing Beijing's culture, material culture such as the Forbidden City, Summer Palace, and Great Wall come to mind; Intangible culture such as Peking Opera, shadow puppets, and roast duck comes to mind as well. However, Beijing Drawing believes that everything in our lives has a cultural significance.

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"A brief history of the fences in Beijing". Image via Beijing Drawing

Beijing Drawing has been on a journey of discovery and interest in new and interesting content. And then to consider how to transform this interesting content into a usable material that everyone will embrace. These are investigations and manifestations of the city's diversity. Their works strive out real-world issues, communicate them uniquely, and bring them to the public's notice and discussion. Beijing Drawing's work " Will IT engineers in Huilongguan be fascinated by bicycle" raises awareness of the bicycle highway, which is currently under construction; " One hundred people who live in Beijing" provides citizens with an intuitive understanding of the city's demographic composition and inspires other cities to follow suit, creating their illustrations of demographic composition.

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"Will IT engineers in Huilongguan be fascinated by bicycle". Image via Beijing Drawing

2. Architects who "Brainwork in Excess"

While the topic of whether architecture is art has long been contentious, aesthetics in the building cannot be denied. Exhibition design is one way for architects to achieve a balance between architecture and art, a way for architects who"brainwork in excess" to express themselves on issues they care about.

Pills Architects

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"Manufacturing Human: Eve's Choice" . Image via Pills Architects

Wang Zigeng established Pills Architects as an exhibition and installation design studio. Even though the studio has increasingly expanded into architectural design, it continues to organize exhibitions to convey the studio's concerns and present research findings outside of actual projects. "Manufacturing Human: Eve's Choice" and "Artificial Nature: the Other Fruits" explore the interaction between humans and tools, examining how technology augments human skills with architecture as a result. Man produces tools. At the same time, tools modify the definition of man.

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"Artificial Nature: the Other Fruits". Image via Pills Architects

"1994", a one-person "theater" installation with a personal narrative, is one of the artist's most recent works. It is a retelling of Wang Ziegeng's childhood memories. Their temporary residence was a single bed hidden behind the shelves of his father's office, and the two "theatres" served as a location to gaze at but not touch each other. It is a way for people to communicate their reliance, antagonism, and regret in interpersonal relationships.

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" 1994". Image via Pills Architects

By combining five collectivist spatial forms - water room, restaurant, screening room, barbershop, and bathhouse - in a "tube-shaped apartment-like" corridor, Polit-Sheer-solo Form's exhibition reflects collectivism.

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" Polit-Sheer-Form ". Image via Pills Architects

3. Architects who define the future

What will the world of the future show up? Numerous science fiction films and novels have imagined a world of advanced technology and industry. Moreover, what should architecture change in the future? Today, software assists in design; might software assist in the construction, or may machine take the place of humans? Several architects are engaged in robotics research and are attempting to define the future of architecture.

ROBOTICPLUS.AI

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Glued wood ceiling-NANJING park digital construction practice. Image Courtesy of ROBOTICPLUS.AI

ROBOTICPLUS. AI is a construction technology business specializing in the development of intelligent robots and construction-related software. They can perform a variety of construction works and scene switching due to their modular hardware and software design, and they provide an excellent human interaction interface that enables construction practitioners to manipulate robots effortlessly. Their products encompass the complete process of design and construction.

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Matrix Production Network. Image Courtesy of ROBOTICPLUS.AI

During the design process, they built the software—ROBIM cloud platform, connecting the design directly to the industrial production equipment, allowing the robot to detect the building's geometric information immediately. Additionally, it has a robust database for nodal optimization of the design. There are metal, wood, and composite factories at the factory production stage, each with a unique set of robots dedicated to a specific step of different materials processing. During the site construction phase, ROBOTICPLUS.AI developed the Capsule Factory, a mobile box-type building component production system comprised of a modular building robot processing station and associated hardware and software transported to construction sites for construction sites a variety of different types of projects to produce building components.

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Capsule Factory. Image Courtesy of ROBOTICPLUS.AI

The current results of ROBOTICPLUS. AI include curtain wall, structure, decoration, and urban facilities.

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Roof-Golden Ridge Upper-cloister. Image Courtesy of ROBOTICPLUS.AI
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Interior decoration-Songyang Children's Book Museum. Image Courtesy of ROBOTICPLUS.AI

4. Architects who build the virtual world

There is much discussion about the "Metaverse" in today's world, and it seems like there is a universe that will be extended from reality into our lives shortly. The term "Metaverse" first appeared in the 1992 science fiction novel "Snow Crash," referring to a virtual reality world. Then, in such a world, those responsible for creating virtual buildings are less likely to be game designers and more likely to be architects.

S-Game

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Shadow Blade: The Convict. Image

Liang Qiwei, the founder of S-Game, earned a bachelor's degree in architecture from Tsinghua University and subsequently pursued a master's degree in architecture at Yale University in the United States. After returning to China, he secured financing from ZhenFund angel investor Mr. Xu Xiaoping and founded Beijing S-Game Network Technology Co. Ltd., where he developed the games "Rain Blood" and " Shadow Blade".

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Rain Blood: Chronicles. Image

Liang Qiwei switched from architecture to game design because he desired control over the creation and designed freely in the virtual world. The synchronization of sensibility and rationality, the integration of art and technology, and the balance of design and implementation, all developed throughout the study of architecture design, may all be used in game production.

5. Architects who create "Architectural Container"

Architectural design includes a building's form, space, function, and materials. When these elements are scaled from large-scale architecture to daily objects, these elements remain. Even the most simple items require consideration of the shape's aesthetics, reserve space for use, and what material attributes are required. Thus, the architect can continue to be involved in the product's production.

ZAOME Studio

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"Architecture flower container". Image via ZAOME Studio

The studio's core mission is "Manufacture, Life, and Aesthetics." The studio's primary focus is on technical research, product development, and customization in the areas of digital fabrication, model manufacturing, small-scale building construction, and exhibition design. The studio's activity is equivalent to creating architectural derivatives.

ZAOME Studio conducts material research for the series "Three" which integrates concrete, a popular architectural material, into the objects, thereby launching "Xi" and "Zhi." The "Three" series is a collection of objects that incorporate concrete, a popular material in building, into artifacts. "Xi" refers to some school supplies, such as paperweights and pencil holders; "Zhi" refers to other school goods "refers to plant containers capable of containing plants, and this product encourages consumers to pour their own. Additionally, they have transformed concrete into jewelry, keyboards, and other items.

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The series "Three". Image via ZAOME Studio
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Concrete pen series · Wind/Heart. Image via ZAOME Studio

The "Architecture flower container" series is a miniature representation of the architectural space. Each clear acrylic piece is placed on top of the other, resembling the method floors overlap in a building. The space within the flower arrangement container is analogous to the inner space supported by the building's vault.

This article is part of the ArchDaily Topic: New Practices, proudly presented by PERI. PERI’s Future Products and Technologies’ department researches disruptive technologies that have the potential to change the construction industry fundamentally. The aim is to recognize the signs of the future and to help shape this future. Through a methodical approach, PERI thus expands its core competencies and acts as a clear pioneer on the market. Learn more about our monthly topics. As always, at ArchDaily we welcome the contributions of our readers; if you want to submit an article or project, contact us.

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Cite: Xiaohang Hou. "Beyond Architecture: 6 Young Chinese Architects Working in Alternative Careers" 06 Dec 2021. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/972051/non-architecture-of-young-chinese-architects> ISSN 0719-8884

"Under The Zhengyangmen". Image Courtesy of DRAWING ARCHITECTURE STUDIO

中国年轻建筑师的“非建筑”

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