Gie Eng Teh
The University of Strathclyde Department of Architecture, Glasgow, Scotland
This project draws from a study of Haruki Murakami's 1985 novel 'Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World' and its fictionalised critique of modern… more
I am pretty clear what architecture means to me, and after 50 years of being in this profession on… more
PLACE IN FICTION
It totally amazes me what is going on in the mind of the young generations of architects. It is actually mind-blowing, but not necessarily in a positive way. It looks to me like an unrealistic reality. What is going on in the young human minds today? What makes them tick? I would not be surprised if these ideas come from a visitor out of space. This is how I would visualize artificial intelligence on its own, without any human input—incredibly complicated on both ends of the spectrum.
Ivanka Teh, I can see the enormous thoughts and ideas you placed into this work. But, ask yourself, what does it mean in the end, what is the meaning and what is it you want to express and accomplish? Some kind of awareness? For whom and what?
Did we forget who we are? It feels to me, generally speaking, that our whole human society lost touch with our natural common sense. We are getting into confusing utopia, unrealistic lifeforms. We have to ask ourselves who we are first, where we are coming from, and where do we go.
All this high-tech nano stuff, 5G microwaves, planning to colonize Mars and soon other planets. Why? What about planet Earth? Did we learn anything about natural law? Did we forget that this planet gave us birth, life to the end, and then it offers us a grave to be buried?
Architecture is an emotional experience! It let us feel the whole scale of our existence. It is an art form and a reminder that we should be a part of it, expressing ourselves in its environment. Nature itself is actually the Grand Master of Architecture. The old builders of history have known this very well.
Basically, I am saying that include the principles of Nature in a harmonious, kind, and loving way with your design. Let it feel like a work of art, get emotional … Let it feel like it is alive, filled with light, air, water, rocks, and earthy plants.
Remember, it should be an emotional experience. We are still humans and no robots. We are Spirits experiencing a human life on this Earth.
Ivanka Teh, you are a very talented and intellectual lady. Your design is very detailed, but a bit confusing. Perhaps this is the point you like to make. I am sure it would be a great philosophical project to discuss. Look at your last slide and ask yourself if this is the world you would like to live in.
Try to create a beautiful world, walk in the Nature, hike in the mountains, or walk on the shore of a beautiful lake … take your time, breeze deeply. Listen carefully and connect, and things become so much clearer and let it sink in.
Remember, you are a child of this beautiful planet. As architects, we never should harm. Instead, we should be a part of this wonderful creation …
This project draws from a study of Haruki Murakami's 1985 novel 'Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World' and its fictionalised critique of modern Japan’s business (counter-)culture. It focuses on the phenomenon of socially-alienated individuals known as the Hikikomori. In response to this, the thesis proposes a series of architectural follies in the Shibuya district of (fictionalised) Tokyo. In the background are questions about expectations of utility and usefulness—asked of both the thinking subjects (the Hikikomori) and of architecture itself.
It responses to the critique posited by Murakami architecturally through a series of follies . These follies charges the issue of hikikomori through the creation of ‘useless’ programmes/ non-programme spaces to connect the hidden community while raising awareness of public through the experiences of these spaces.
By drawing and designing over Murakami, this thesis relooks at Tokyo, Japan and its cultural baggage that is crushing the individual.
The design of the follies is distinct and varied, but never overly complex, guided by the conceptual framework of the thesis. Every folly is constructed with realistic buildability and material that best represent the architectural gesture of each folly.