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How Are Public Washrooms Shaping Places in China?

Public Toilets in Zuzhai Village / cnS. Image © Siming Wu
Public Toilets in Zuzhai Village / cnS. Image © Siming Wu

In recent years, with the accelerated urban development of public spaces in China, public washrooms have been assigned numerous new roles. Designers have come up with a variety of proposals which suggest turning public washrooms into a place where social gathering can be redefined, and temporary stay can be more engaging. Although the scale of public washrooms is significantly smaller than that of any other type of architecture, Chinese architects have been working innovatively on fitting the public washrooms into the changing social contexts. Below are a few examples that demonstrate some current architectural experiments with public washroom design in China.

Public Toilets in Zuzhai Village / cnS. Image © Siming WuNantou Public Toilet / Edge Studio. Image © Zhuoheng FuPP Garden / People’s Architecture Office. Image Courtesy of People’s Architecture OfficeToilets with a View / guó bàn ér. Image © Shu He+ 35

Open Air: New Ways We Can Live Together in Nature

“We need a new spatial contract." This is the call of Hashim Sarkis, curator of the Venice Biennale 2021, as an invitation for architects to imagine new spaces in which we can live together. Between a move towards urban flight and global housing crises, the growth of more low-rise, dense developments may provide an answer in the countryside. Turning away from single family homes in rural areas and suburbs, modern housing projects are exploring new models of shared living in nature.

© Shu He© HG Esch© Christian Wöckinger© Dio Guna Putra+ 13

Spotlight: Steven Holl

As the founder of Steven Holl Architects, Steven Holl (born December 9, 1947) is recognized as one of the world's leading architects, having received prestigious awards for his contributions to design over the course of nearly forty years in practice, including the prestigious Alvar Aalto Medal in 1998, the AIA Gold Medal in in 2012, and the 2014 Praemium Imperiale. In 1991, Time Magazine named Holl America's Best Architect. He is revered for his ability to harness light to create structures with remarkable sensitivity to their locations, while his written works have been published in many preeminent volumes, sometimes collaborating with world-renowned architectural thinkers such as Juhani Pallasmaa and Alberto Pérez-Gómez.

Linked Hybrid. Image © Iwan Baan       Sliced Porosity Block. Image © Hufton+Crow Nanjing Sifang Art Museum. Image ©  SHU HeCampbell Sports Center. Image © Iwan Baan       + 26

Tree Art Museum / Daipu Architects

©  SHU He©  SHU He©  SHU He©  SHU He+ 24

  • Architects: Daipu Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  3200
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2009

Centre Pompidou Acquires 12 Architectural Models by MAD Architects

The Centre Pompidou in Paris has acquired 12 architectural models by MAD Architects, depicting 10 significant projects undertaken by the firm. Each model embodies MAD’s core values that “look to envisioning a futuristic architecture that is akin to dream-like earthscapes – one that creates a conversation with nature, the earth, and the sky.”

The collection, permanently acquired by the Pompidou, represents projects developed by MAD between 2005 and the present day, demonstrating the evolution of the firm’s design process. The Pompidou has become the first major European cultural institution to acquire such a collection of MAD’s work, on display in an exhibition beginning in April 2019.

Clover House. Image Courtesy of MAD ArchitectsEast 34th. Image Courtesy of MAD ArchitectsLucas Museum of Narrative Art (Chicago). Image © Shu HePingtan Art Museum. Image © Shu He+ 13

Atelier Deshaus: "The Idea Is Not to Create an Object But to Construct a Path"

In China's newly emerging constellation of famed architects, few firms elicit the sense of surprise caused by the work of Atelier Deshaus. With projects ranging from awe-inspiring to humble, their work does not adhere to any stylistic rules, but all of their projects exude an enigmatic aura. In this interview, the latest in Vladimir Belogolovsky’s “City of Ideas” series, principals Liu Yichun and Chen Yifeng discuss the role of identity in their work and how they try to connect their buildings to the landscape.

Vladimir Belogolovsky: Is it true that you each design different projects in the studio? Why is that?

Liu Yichun: This has been true since 2010. Before that we always designed everything together. We used to have endless discussions and too many disagreements and arguments. That’s why we decided to pursue two parallel paths. This approach led to greater efficiency and it helped us to formulate clearer ideas of our independent views of architecture. It also helps us to diversify our work and to avoid forming one recognizable style.

Chen Yifeng: It is important for us to express our solutions differently, even though, fundamentally, we are working in one direction and pursuing one family of ideas.

Long Museum West Bund, Shanghai, 2014. Image © Shengliang SuKindergarten of Jiading New Town, Shanghai, 2008. Image © Shu HeSpiral Gallery I, Shanghai, 2011. Image © Shu HeHuaxin Wisdom Hub, Shanghai, 2015. Image © Hao Chen+ 28

Ma Yansong: “Some People May Say My Work Is Futuristic, But I See It as Traditional”

With the unconventional, undulating forms of his buildings—and the fact that his path to architectural success included a stint working for Zaha HadidMa Yansong is often miscategorized as an architect of the latter generation of Deconstructivists, interested only in futuristic forms that push the boundaries of technology for the sake of innovation as an end in itself. But in fact Ma’s designs, especially those in his home country of China, are deeply rooted in nature and tradition, as he explains in the latest interview from Vladimir Belogolovsky’s “City of Ideas” series.

Chaoyang Park Plaza. Image © Hufton + CrowHarbin Opera House. Image © Iwan BaanHuangshan Mountain Village. Image © Fernando Guerra |  FG+SGAbsolute Towers. Image © Iwan Baan+ 93

The 50 Most Popular Architecture Photographs of 2017

At ArchDaily, we're lucky enough to know a fantastic network of architecture professionals, allowing us to share the world's best architecture with our audience. But our articles wouldn't be the same without the many photographers who dedicate themselves to making incredible, inspiring images. For that reason, here we present the 50 most popular architecture images of 2017.

Huangshan Mountain Village / MAD Architects

© Laurian Ghinitoiu© Laurian Ghinitoiu© Laurian Ghinitoiu© Laurian Ghinitoiu+ 21

Huangshan Shi, China
  • Architects: MAD Architects
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  613200
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2017

Videos: 16 Top Architects Discuss China's "Museum Boom"

Currently on display at the Aedes Architecture Forum Berlin, "ZÀI XĪNG TǓ MÙ: Sixteen Chinese Museums, Fifteen Chinese Architects," takes an in-depth look at China’s recent museum boom and its effects on the socio-political and cultural landscape of modern China.

As part of the exhibition, filmmaker Moritz Dirks sat down with 16 of the top architects working in China today, including Wang Shu, Dang Qun of MAD Architects, and Zhu Pei of Studio Pei-Zhu, to discuss the challenges of creating cultural spaces that relate both to the global, digital, urban contexts of the contemporary world and to the strong heritage and identity of Chinese culture.

Continue after the break for the 16 interviews.

Janzi Box / CLOU

© SHU He© SHU He© SHU He© SHU He+ 17

Beijing, China
  • Architects: CLOU
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2015

Hangzhou Xiaoshan Linjiang Local Council Service Centre / BAU

© SHU He© SHU He© SHU He© SHU He+ 33

  • Architects: BAU
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  13807 Area:  13807
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2011 Year:  2011

An Interview With Chen Yifeng, Deshaus

Long Museum West Bund / Atelier Deshaus. Image © Xia Zhi
Long Museum West Bund / Atelier Deshaus. Image © Xia Zhi

“We use two aspects to express architecture: Qing [emotion], Jing [pattern]. Jing is the architectural pattern that we apply, to certify the living and working style, to consider what our architecture can bring. Another thing is the relationship between architecture and the site, the city and nature. Ancient Chinese dwellings are usually enclosed by walls, creating an introverted space. This is the second aspect Qing, more related to traditional customs, aesthetics, and our attitude towards the environment and nature. The enclosed space originates from our interpretation of Qing. What we have captured about the ancient spirit of aesthetics is a kind of uncertainty, a kind of blurry and ambiguous feeling.”
- Chen Yifeng, Shanghai, 2013

Long Museum West Bund / Atelier Deshaus. Image © Xia ZhiKindergarten of Jiading New Town / Atelier Deshaus. Image © Shu HeSpiral Gallery / Atelier Deshaus. Image © Shu HeYouth Center of Qingpu / Atelier Deshaus. Image © Yao Li+ 20

Vanke Daxing Sales Gallery / CLOU

© SHU He© SHU He© SHU He© SHU He+ 36

  • Architects: CLOU
  • Area Area of this architecture project Area:  391000
  • Year Completion year of this architecture project Year:  2014

Jing Mian Xin Cheng / CLOU architects

Courtesy of CLOUCourtesy of CLOUCourtesy of CLOUCourtesy of CLOU+ 25

Australian Institute of Architects Awards Best Overseas Projects by Australian Architects

The Australian Institute of Architects' International Area Committee Jury has announced the recipients of its 2014 international awards, given to projects completed by Australian architects overseas. The biggest winners on the night were Denton Corker Marshall, who in addition to winning the Award for Public Architecture with their Stonehenge Visitor Centre also received commendations for public architecture and commercial architecture.

BVN Donovan Hill dominated in the field of interior architecture, scooping both the award and a commendation in the category. Kerry Hill Architects also achieved the same result in the residential category. Read on after the break for the full list of awards and commendations.

Asia Square / Denton Corker Marshall. Image © John GollingsPARKROYAL on Pickering, Singapore / WOHA. Image © Patrick Bingham HallThe Sukhothai Residences / Kerry Hill Architects. Image © Albert LimShelter@Rainforest / Marra + Yeh Architects. Image © Brett Boardman+ 12

Jiangyin Primary & Secondary School / BAU Brearley Architects + Urbanists

© Shu He© Shu He© Shu He© Shu He+ 19

Suzhou School / BAU Brearley Architects + Urbanists

© Shu He© Shu He© Shu He© Shu He+ 9

Suzhou, China