China Project 5: Xiangshan Campus, China Academy of Art.

hardythomas000's Blog

Designer: Wang  Shu, Amateur Architecture Studio

Project: “The campus has often been described as an interpretation of Chinese calligraphy, with Phase One representing the geometric, standard form of the characters, and the more expressive Phase Two representing a freehand, cursive script. Though this distinction can be discerned in plan, in the realm of experience the metaphor breaks down. The overwhelming impression of the campus as a whole is one of limited material expression but infinite variety, a thoroughly contemporary construction imbued with the aura of the traditional. While the architect’s use of salvaged bricks and tiles is important, what really ties Wang Shu’s work to tradition is the adaptation of formal strategies, not the material palette.” (

Why I like it: Use of salvaged materials, traditional construction technique, respect for culture and tradition while still creating something radical and original.


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