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Ma Yansong: The Latest Architecture and News

TED Talk: Ma Yansong Designs Mountains, Clouds and Volcanoes

Ma Yansong has come to represent a new generation of Chinese architects shaping a forward-looking architecture. Founder of the firm MAD Architects, Yansong was the first Chinese architect to receive a RIBA fellowship. Today, Ma continues to explore contemporary architecture that's grounded in traditional Eastern values of nature, bridging design between the East and West. His latest TED Talk explores his new projects and surreal designs.

Courtesy of MAD Architects Courtesy of MAD Architects Courtesy of MAD Architects Courtesy of MAD Architects + 6

Spotlight: Ma Yansong

Founder of the innovative architecture firm MAD Architects, Ma Yansong (born 26 November 1975) has helped to give China a name in the international architecture scene. The first Chinese architect to receive a RIBA fellowship, Ma explores contemporary architecture in relation to traditional eastern values of nature, resulting in buildings that are complex and contextually aware, but sometimes even surreal.

Harbin Opera House. Image © Iwan Baan Absolute Towers. Image © Iwan Baan Courtesy of MAD Architects Harbin Opera House. Image © Hufton+Crow + 13

MAD's First US Project 'Gardenhouse' Tops Out in Beverly Hills

Bird view. Image Courtesy of MAD Architects
Bird view. Image Courtesy of MAD Architects

MAD Architects’ first project in the U.S., an 18-unit residential complex, has topped out in Beverly Hills. The project named ‘Gardenhouse’, is founded upon the idea of coalescing nature and the built environment in a dense urban center, providing residents an experience similar to that of living in a “hilltop village”. Once fully completed, Gardenhouse will feature a terraced arrangement of urban villas atop a plant-covered podium.

Rendering. Image Courtesy of MAD Architects Rendering. Image Courtesy of MAD Architects Bird view. Image Courtesy of MAD Architects Interior. Image Courtesy of MAD Architects + 9

Open Call: 2018 MAD Travel Fellowship

To architecture students worldwide, MAD encourages you to apply for the 2018 MAD Travel Fellowship.

Ma Yansong, founding principal partner of MAD Architects, initiated MAD Travel Fellowship in 2009. During the past 8 years, the program has sponsored 45 students for their overseas architecture travels to Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. MAD believes it is only through travel – the visceral experience of interacting with, and being influenced by, different spaces – that one can begin to understand ideas of context and gain a deeper insight into architecture.

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 + Crow Harbin Opera House. Image © Iwan Baan Huangshan Mountain Village. Image © Fernando Guerra |  FG+SG Absolute Towers. Image © Iwan Baan + 93

MAD Architects' Emotional Architecture is Shaping the Future of China's Growing Skyline

Architecture has to be organic… we need to create a space for people to connect, to coexist - MAD Architects. 

As the demographic of China’s buildings changes, one architect is fighting the “artificial” straight lines and tower blocks that are plaguing the skyline. In the government’s mass urbanization, skyscrapers are having to be built constantly for all the people that are flocking to the cities.

Ma Yansong, the founder of MAD Architects explains “They often deal with efficiency, the function, the structure. There's no nature. People love to go closer to nature and other people, so we need to create environments that let people have these emotional connections."

MAD's Lucas Museum of Narrative Art Approved by LA City Council

The Los Angeles City Council has unanimously voted to approve the construction of the long-awaited Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in LA’s Exposition Park, all but ensuring that the museum has finally found its permanent home after three years of searching.

The Best Architect-Designed Pieces from Design Miami/ Basel 2017

With Design Miami/ Basel 2017 well underway (from June 13-18), ArchDaily has compiled a list of the best architect-designed furniture pieces on display at the event. This year, notable items include works by MAD Architects, Christ & Gantenbien, Trix & Robert Haussman, John Lautner, Jonathen Muecke, Jean Prouvé and Sou Fujimoto.

New Renderings Revealed for MAD's Lucas Museum in Los Angeles

New renderings showing an updated design for the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in Los Angeles have been revealed as part of a presentation to the LA city planning commission. Designed by MAD Architects, the building will house the Star Wars-directors’ expansive collection of art, illustrations and artifacts, showcasing the art of visual storytelling.

Courtesy of Los Angeles Department of City Planning Courtesy of Los Angeles Department of City Planning Courtesy of Los Angeles Department of City Planning Courtesy of Los Angeles Department of City Planning + 4

How to Pronounce the Names of 22 Notable Architects

There’s no doubt that one of the best things about architecture is its universality. Wherever you come from, whatever you do, however you speak, architecture has somehow touched your life. However, when one unexpectedly has to pronounce a foreign architect’s name... things can get a little tricky. This is especially the case when mispronunciation could end up making you look less knowledgeable than you really are. (If you're really unlucky, it could end up making you look stupid in front of your children and the whole world.)

To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of 22 architects with names that are a little difficult to pronounce, and paired them with a recording in which their names are said impeccably. Listen and repeat as many times as it takes to get it right, and you’ll be prepared for any intellectual architectural conversation that comes your way. 

Los Angeles Selected as New Site for MAD's Lucas Museum

The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art has finally found a home. Following nearly a decade of searching, the museum’s board has announced that Los Angeles’ Exposition Park will serve as the site for the MAD Architects-designed building housing the life’s work and expansive art and media collection of one of history’s most celebrated filmmakers, George Lucas.

"MAD Works: MAD Architects" Introduced by Sir Peter Cook

The skylines of modern China are punctuated by architecture that amazes, inspires, and awes. Many of these towering structures are the work of the Beijing-based experimental practice MAD Architects, led by Ma Yansong.

People often ask what 'MAD' stands for; sometimes, I explain it stands for MA Design, but I like MAD (adjective) Architects better. It sounds like a group of architects with an attitude towards design and practice. I think it is important to practice architecture with an attitude, to be critical and sensitive to the issues and challenges in our world.

MAD Unveils Dual Lucas Museum Proposals for Los Angeles and San Francisco

In the latest episode of what has become a dramatic narrative worthy of its own space opera, The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art has revealed plans for their two newest hopes: prospective museum designs, one in Los Angeles and one in San Francisco, that could serve as the new home of filmmaker George Lucas’ eclectic personal collection of artworks, costumes and artifacts.

After their failed proposal for a mountain-shaped museum along the Chicago Waterfront, the museum has again tapped architect Ma Yansong and his firm, MAD Architects, to design both proposals for the California sites, the first along the water on Treasure Island in San Francisco Bay, and the second for a site in Exposition Park in Los Angeles, adjacent to the city’s Natural History Museum and the Coliseum.

Lucas Museum Abandons Plans for Chicago Location

The Lucas Museum has been looking for a home in all the wrong places. Following months of fiery debate over the future of the museum’s proposed lakefront location, George Lucas announced that he is abandoning plans to build the project in Chicago and will instead return to looking for a site in California. This is the second failed location for the museum, after being rejected by San Francisco’s Presidio Trust in early 2014.

MAD Unveils "Invisible Border" Installation for the 2016 Salone del Mobile

Created for the 2016 Milan Design Week, MAD Architects’ “Invisible Borders” installation is part of the “Open Borders” exhibition curated by Italian magazine Interni. Taking place in the traditional Cortile d’Onore courtyard of Università degli Studi di Milano, the installation is a canopy made from ribbons of ETFE in gradient colors, which has a lightness and flexibility that allows it to rustle in the wind and generate a subtle whistling sound. According to MAD, “The installation reflects the hues of the sky during the day, leaving glimpses of the columns and loggias. In the evening it becomes a luminous surface that brings the courtyard to live with new colors.”

Courtesy of MAD Architects Courtesy of MAD Architects Courtesy of MAD Architects Courtesy of MAD Architects + 12

MAD's George Lucas Museum Wins Approval in Chicago

The Chicago City Council has voted to approve zoning for George Lucas' controversial, MAD-designed Lucas Museum of Narrative Art. Planned for a lakefront site on Chicago's Museum Campus park, near the Shedd Aquarium and Field Museum, the "mountainous" design faced opposition from environmentalists who claim the building is a "confiscation of public land." Despite this, and according to reports on NBC News, the Star Wars director won the Council's approval by promising more parking and tailgating space to Chicago Bears fans.

“The Lucas Museum of Narrative Art will be an incredible addition to Chicago’s Museum Campus,” said Mayor Emanuel in an official statement. “The Lucas Museum will join the 56 other museums in Chicago to provide new cultural and educational benefits for generations to come. And the new parkland will add more open greenspace that will be enjoyed by residents across the city.”

"Shanshui City" Book Launch

Ma Yansong, Founder and Principle Partner of MAD Architects, will launch his most recent book Shanshui City on October 13th at The Architecture & Design Museum, Los Angeles. The free event will begin with a brief presentation on Shanshui City by Ma Yansong at 7:00 p.m. and will be followed by a conversation with Frances Anderton of KCRW’s DnA: Design and Architecture, and Dean Qingyun Ma from the USC School of Architecture.