Common / Central / Ground

Related Staff : Devabhaktuni, Sony

Students: Au Chun Hung, Bedin Alexandra, Cheung Chun Hin, Khaitan Akshara, Nushev Milan Aleksandrov, Wu Yi-en, Yu Ka Long, Zhu Jiqi

Platform: Geography Landscape Infrastructure (GLI)
Studio name: Architectural Design 5
Year: BA(AS) Year 4 Fall 2017
Tutor: Sony Devabhaktuni

Geography Landscape Infrastructure

Sections cut through the “Site of Intervention”, extend into the “Site of Influence” and theoretically beyond, in both directions. Studio teams share resources as they begin to investigate their respective sections. The section has been explored both as an abstract cut through the city, within and into the ground, and as a literal line that demands an investigation of “facts of the ground”.

In the studio, we focus more specifically on architecture’s capacity to address the scale of geography, landscape and infrastructure, moving from the domain of singular interventions to a questioning of the role that territorial, regional and global systems, both material and immaterial, can play in architecture’s capacity to address the complexities faced by Hong Kong Central.

Common / Central / Ground. Each of these terms is contentious; even more so when we explore their multiple meanings or when we juxtapose one next to the other; or in relation to Hong Kong. The objective of the semester is to articulate a position vis a vis these terms.

Geography / Landscape / Infrastructure. These fields of inquiry may seem uncomfortably outside the domain of architecture. Are they not disciplines in and of themselves? Or the domain of engineers? The studio tests architecture’s capacity to interrogate the city using these territorial scales of thinking, reading and observing. What are the limits of this capacity?

At the same time the studio challenges distinctions between these three ways of thinking about territory, to show that perhaps geography is landscape, or that infrastructure is geography; and that architects can work within the ambiguities of these distinctions to propose ways of reading and intervening in the city that more convincingly account for its ever more challenging complexities.

Economics / Politics / History. The studio interrogates both the material and the immaterial conditions that comprise Central. Students are asked to develop a position drawn from a specific, personal and discursive reading of the political economy that drives (or has driven) the development of Central, a political economy rooted both in the spaces of the district and in regional, transnational and global forms of exchange.

Process. The studio is structured around the development of territorial scale sections that test the capacity of drawing to document, synthesise and interpret the systems and forces that govern Hong Kong Central.