gooood team interviews creative individuals under 35 years old from all over the world, some are pioneering founders, some are ordinary practitioners. gooood is trying to record the authentic living and working states of this era. Your recommendations and suggestions are appreciated!
gooood Under 35 NO.6 introduces Wang Tiantian. More: Wang Tiantian on gooood.
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gooood x Wang Tiantian 王田田
历程：黄岩 — 杭州 — 北京 — 杭州
Journey: Huangyan – Hangzhou – Beijing – Hangzhou
“Choosing architecture is a coincidence to me, but going back to study in Hangzhou after working in Beijing for three years after my graduation from the China Academy of Art is a destinated. In deep down, I really want to be in charge of a project like Le Corbusier’s Couvent de la Tourette that responds to the society and the community.”
▼故乡的九峰山，Jiufeng Shan in Huangyan
I came from Huangyan, a small and cozy town around Taizhou. A mountain calls Jiufeng Shan is located at its east, which can be seen even from many places in the town. For that reason, the city was felt close to the Nature even after many new modern towers were built recently. I was living in my grandmother’s house, a traditional Southern Eastern Chinese residential community with a huge family. In that community, both the relationships between people and the relationship between human and nature are rather intimate. It was an environment that I miss quite a lot. That makes me always think of designing a social and public project like Le Corbusier ‘s Couvent de la Tourette.
▼拉图雷特修道院，de la Tourette
To me, taking architecture is accidental, but studying Art is destined, for I have been loving painting since I was a child. I chose to get into the School of Art and Design when I was admitted by the China Academy of Art. It was in my second year in the college that we are asked to choose a major from Architecture, Industrial Design and Fashion Design, etc. The directors of all majors came and made lectures for their majors in order to introduce their field of studies. I remember that one quote from Professor Wang: “ you have to learn how to play well first before you learn how to study architecture.” Perhaps that inspired me to choose architecture. That was an accident.
I stayed in Beijing and worked in a studio called atelier 100s+1 for three years after my graduation of college. That was not a large one, yet everyone works equally there. There was one thing inspired me a lot: in every few weeks, a colleague in my studio would share the outcomes of what he had been doing research on recently. And then, everyone will talk about that. From that I developed a habit of doing small researches in my spared time. Beijing is a city of many this kind of art events, so I try to attend those exhibitions of arts or shows. I have learned a lot of interesting people from them.
▼在北京百子甲壹工作室工作，working in atelier 100s+1 in Beijing
I always think of going back to the South one day since I went to Beijing. Because I like Xihu Lake and like the campus of my college in Xiangshan. Meanwhile, I am also a big fan of Professor Wang. Thus, There is something not by chances in my decision of going back for my grad-school. The China Academy of Art ‘s curriculum is experimental and open-ended. The school was just founded when I was a undergraduate student, so they are open to all kinds of opinion about this profession, and not really restricted. They occasionally have some talented guest lecturers coming here for some experimental classes. Such environment is easy for us to develop the personality of critical thinking: we are curious about everything, and we are willing to think critically on the issues that we face everyday. Meanwhile, the school is ever changing. Every student in the system can benefit from the school differently and develop into a different direction.
▼2015中国美院研究生毕设作品云梯，graduate design Cloud Stair in China Academy of Art in 2015
I had been working for more than one year in the office of Professor Wang Shu since I graduated from grad-school. He believes that it is hard to do a project well if the schedule is too fast-paced, so the amount of works we have in the studio was much controled. Since we workedon them in slow paces, we would be able to spend more time and energy on adjusting and improving our schemes. It is almost like how we work in our studio now. We will intentionally slow down our pace for our designs, so that we may spend one year or even a few years in a project that we could finish it in two months.
▼2016年威尼斯建筑双年展协助王澍老师布展，help Wang Shu prepare exhibition in the 2016 Venice Biennale of Architecture
Two hints of the study
“One hint is about the Chinese garden, another hint is about home.”
My experimental projects are periodically based. They mostly are relevant with what I am interested in at that time. They mostly can be categorized into two hints: one is about the landscape, the other is about home. While the hint about the landscape involves with room of white tiles, and layered circles, the plan of redrawing the painting of Horizontal View of HuanCui Hall, the Tower Garden, and my thesis projects, the series of Jumping Houses is about the hint of home. Both hints intertwined with each other, and both of them shows my investigation of interesting spaces.
Hint of Chinese garden
Hint of Chinese Garden – Thesis Project “the Winding Model”
“You can consider this series as a series of five designs. Meanwhile, you can also view it as five discussions about winding.”
My thesis project starts from a simple word – winding. You can consider this series as a series of five designs, or you can also view it as five discussions about winding. I captures five moments about “winding” in current existing Chinese gardens, and evolve five new spaces from them. For instance, I will try understanding winding from the aspects of branching, or from the aspects of changing directions of routes. At the same time, they can also be viewed as mere schematic designs of future architecture.
I always believe that designing and researching can be parallel, because the process of capturing those moments is redefining folding. Designing can start from a short moment of folding, and that moment can be viewed as a relatively intact test-model with the potential of developing into an independent new space. I exhibited this idea into a more palpable space in my house. Meanwhile, the other couple models are also relatively intact models with the potentials of triggering new spaces too. Among them, the “Cloud Ladder” was developed into a installation. I do wish the other three designs could be realized in the future in one way or another.
▼云梯装置，以假山为原型，the installation of Cloud Ladder, inspired by the small rockery in the Humble Administrator’s Garden
Five moments of folding is determined one by one. I have done a few site-research during the time I was writing my thesis. As I realized that folding is not just about a formal quality, I started to change my view on places where I did not realize folding happen. The Chinese characters for“Folding” can imbed a even more profound meaning. For instance, there is a word call “Qu-Shi”, which means a room that was hiden somewhere more obscure. I think one of the advantages of parralleling designing and researching is getting new insights of folding through discussions on it.
▼分岔图书馆，演变自拙政园的八道游廊，Branching Library inspired by the eight winding verandas in the Humble Administrator’s Garden
▼峰回路转茶室，从曲廊获得灵感，Teahouse of Twists and Turns, inspired by winding veranda
▼环形美术馆，从苏州园林中迂回曲折的环形花园中获得灵感，Ring Gallery, inspired by the twisting circular yards in the Suzhou gardens
Hint of Chinese Garden – Thesis Project “Cui Lingong”
“We love living here.”
I believe that putting the Crystalline Jade in a ordinary room will create a interesting space. However, because that have never occurred before, we would never know how lives would be like in here. Therefore, I call it a experiment of living. After living here for half an year, we have found that we were loving it, which was at really literal emotion. We have found corners for each of us to stay, although we can also share them. We have been thinking of working together on that desk for both of us. Yet, Yaqin chose to stay at where she was before, the dinning table, so that it can be even more independent. It matchs with our plan in the very beginning, which is that the programs of this space can be switched mutually, and the dinning table can be used for things other than having food. Meanwhile, we also like the opening for food delivery much. Besides delivering foods, it allows us seeing each other while one is cooking. As much as the fact that cooking on ones own is boring, the window for food delivery brings unexpected experience. Conceptually, this spaces was adapted by a concept we like much, but it does seem to be a bit forcefully excuted. But at the end of the day, it represents what we are into at that time, and we love living in here.
▼夫妻二人可以拥有各自的生活和工作空间，Wang Tiantian and Luo Yaqin could have their own space of living and working in “Cui Linglong”
▼室内丰富的视觉关系，various visual connections
Hint of Chinese Garden – “ Room of White Tiles”, “The Plan of Copying the Painting of ‘Horizontal View of Huan Cui Hall’” and “the Layered Garden”
“Room of White Tiles: an extremely abstract Chinese garden.”
The Room of White Tiles is a space entirely built by white tiles. Just like Mr Tongjun said, “a garden can be built without greenry”, I was thinking that the relationship within a landscape architecture is more important than the content of it. Thus, I design three installations that look both like a wall and furniture, and put them simutaneously in one space. They generated a spatial relationship that is both continuous and disrupte, by both divided and connected the space. It is a relationship that I have always been interested in.
▼白瓷砖的房间草图，三个既像墙又像家具的装置，sketch of the Room of White Tiles, three installations act both as walls and furniture
▼一个极度抽象的园林，an extremely abstract Chinese garden
“The Plan of Copying the Painting of ‘Horizontal View of Huan Cui Hall’”: a parallel unfolded universe.”
The Plan of Copying<Horizontal View of Huan Cui Hall> occurred after I saw this scroll. It is interesting and foreign to me, and it can be used as a way of experiencing the world of ancient people. During the time I was copying, I found that it was actually parallel unfolded space with both the nature landscapes, houses, scenery of people working and entertaining. Both the size and the distance of the scale changes constantly, they are different from the perspective we observe things nowadays.
▼以临摹去了解古人的世界，experience the world of ancient people by copying the old works
“The Layered Circles: folding a series of zigzag spaces like the entrance of Liu Garden into an vertical art museum.”
The Layerred Circles is a schematic design of an Art museum in CBD. Because of the existence of elevator, high – rising towers lose a lot of interesting experiencee. Therefore, I was thinking that if we can fold a series of zigzag spaces like the entrance of Liu Garden into an vertical art museum. That was probably the time we started to focus and research on the quality of winding
▼把曲折的园林空间折叠到垂直的美术馆中，fold the winding space of Chinese garden to create a vertical gallery
the True Spirit of Chinese Garden
“The spirit of Chinese garden is open-minded. It is about the fact that there are always people in different periods of history think of their own ideal landscape and garden. That is the spirit of landscape.”
If we take the traditional gardens as the beginning of our designs, then we would have to examine whether the design is really following the disciplines and dogmas of traditional gardens. It is certainly restricted, for the traditional gardens are what they have in the past. However，if we simply take the traditional gardens as mere beginning, capture a moment of them or an idea about gardens. The design generates from that can be much less restricted. Just like that although the beginning of a story is important, it does not determine how the story develops and ends. There are also another thing that inspires me a lot: Jorge Borges described a Chinese garden in his novel called “The Garden of Forking Paths”. Although he loved Chinese Culture and read The Story of the Stone for many times, he had never been to China. Therefore his fictional Chinese Garden is certainly different from the authentic traditional gardens. But that does not make the Chinese reader be short of interests on the garden that he literally described. The Spirit of Landscape and Garden is open-minded. There are always some ambitious people in their time. They might get bored by the living in the city, and they believe that it is too orthodox and too restricted, so they will start to design some spaces that are closer to the Nature and more interesting. I believe that this kind of activity follows the Spirit of Garden and Landscape.
▼截取古典园林片段运用在“翠玲珑”的设计中，select part of traditional Chinese garden and use it in the design of “Cui Linglong”
▼《小径分岔的花园》节选，excerpt from The Garden of Forking Paths
▼艺圃浴鸥小院，一处幽深的曲室，The Garden of Cultivation is a escape to the nature
I don’t think the Spirit of Chinese Garden is dated nowadays. There would be people in each period of history think about their ideal version of landscape and garden. That is the Spirit of Chinese Garden to me. The Gardens in Suzhou that we are visiting nowadays is not the entirety of the Spirit of Chinese garden, but a physical show-off of it after it was developed into a really complicated stage. Each period of history has its own styles of Landscape and Garden, and they all interact with the cities they located. As gardens is enclosed and even exclusive to the cities in most people’s impression. In fact, there are evidences of the contrary. For instance, the Sui Garden of Shen Mei in Qin Dynasty was open to the public. It is a really decent Public space that is both interesting and casual. A more extreme example is the West Lake. It can be seen as a huge Chinese garden that interacts dynamically with the city.
▼西湖，一座开放的巨型园林，West Lake is a huge Chinese garden that open to the whole city
Hint of Home
Hint of Home – Jumping Houses
“He who hopes to be a creative architect should first have enough imagination for his home.”
Jumping houses is a series. I lived in different rooms since my graduation from college. The series of Jumping Houses is a series about research and hypothesis on this houses. We have studied the master architects or some precedents that have nothing to do with us. Since they are all very abstract examples on the books, I thought that I ‘d rather start my research from the houses that I lived, which are more palpable and directly related to me. Since then I started this plan.
We were living in a typical residential house built in 60s or 70s last century during the time we were in Beijing. Half of the wall is painted green, and the bathroom was arranged next to the hallway. The living condition is not ideal, both Yaqing and I love it quite a lot though. Therefore, I would like to think of it in two aspects. One is to record it, which means to explore the nature of what make us enjoy it. In architecture, we will try to clarify each methods and the space it generates, but the use of design method is absent in there. I also try recording by drawing or photography, and I even wrote a fictional story about it. The story is about depicting description of this house from everyone who visited here. Of course, my own insights of the house and my own experience in the house are included. Another thing is to discuss the potential behind it, and to see what it could possibly develop and change into.
▼用绘画记录公寓楼中的生活，record the life in the old apartment by hand drawing
We want to made a rather drastic change on Jumping Houses I, which is to change the entire apartment building into one single residential house. I was intending to see if I can initiate my designs from a single room, more specifically , from the naming of a single room like “a house that jumping around”, “a room with windows in its six sides”, “a room beneath a fish pool”, etc. You will find that the design of the room was already done as you named it. New and more interesting spaces will be formed when you organized them together again. Naming the rooms not only defines the rooms themselves, but also decides the relationship between each room. The approach I used in naming rooms also impacts on my design of my own house. For instance, we consider the Crystalline Jade both as one room and three separate rooms.
▼跳房子I，从命名开始设计，将房间组织成有趣的空间，Jumping Houses I, started from naming the rooms and combined them to create interesting spaces
I wanted to set up more restrictions for myself in Jumping House II. Thus, I treated it as a realistic house reconstruction project and I designed my reconstruction from the existing plan. I tried to start from an even smaller topic in this design. For example, I try a weirder approaches like the “door of Duchamp”, “a desk spans through two rooms”, “capturing light from a mini-hole”, etc., which are all fragmented design approaches. For example, in “a desk that spans through three rooms”, Yaqing and I sit at opposite sides of the desk. Though both of us are sharing one single desk, we are in different rooms. An ambiguous relationship that was neither enclosed nor inclusive was created within the space, and that is what I got interested in at that time. Those are ideas that relevant with creating new spaces. “Capturing light from a mini-hole” is a story we all know, and is also a phrase imbedded a highly spatial quality. There are two rooms, and one hole was pierced between them. As long as one room was lite, both rooms will be illuminated. To the room that is not lite, it really captures the light from a mini-hole. This spatial relationship is shown in my own house: I try to design multiple dimensions with different levels of privacy to connect spaces.
▼跳房子II，从更小的切入点去进行设计，Jumping House II, initiate the design from smaller topics
In Jumping Houses III, I discussed the potential of living in a larger environment. At that time, we rent a unfurnished house in Hangzhou, which is a huge single floor house. We try to divide spaces by flexible cutlines, matted floor or furniture. My house is in somewhere within the spectrum of Jump House I II and III. It is neither a large room nor many smaller rooms. It is house with all parelled and mutually interacted spatial qualities. He who hopes to be a creative architect should first have enough imagination for his home.
▼跳房子III，用软性隔断、铺地或家具区分空间，Jumping House III, dividing the space by flexible cutlines, matted floor or furniture
The Value of doing small scale designs and researches
“I don’t follow any particular styles. Each of my designs is specific. A particular kind of form is liable to be read as a style, but forms should not be determined by styles.”
▼塔院草图，从特定地点可以看到特定图像，sketch of the Tower Garden, particular paintings could be viewed from specific point
For me, ethereality is a good compliment. I don’t follow any particular styles. Each of my designs is specific. A particular kind of form is liable to be read as a style, but forms should not be determined by styles. Let’s take the Tower Garden as an example: it is a experiential installation in a exhibition designed for a artist friend. The site is surrounded by a circular ramp. Therefore, I built a tower in the vertical direction and set up specific views for respected locations, from which you are able to see those important drawing in the exhibition. Since I divide three courtyard of visiting the show by a zigzag corridor on the plan, from this perspective, the form of the architecture is determined by behaviors of human bodies and sights rather than style. Even though I am not following any particular styles, the ideas behind different designs of my are relevant. Said the Towers Garden and the Ladder are both art project, and although each of them looks different, they are similar discourses to talk about. While the Towers Garden focuses more on the relationship between landscapes and view, the Ladder pay more attention on physical experience about winding. Although their forms are different, they both relate with topic of landscape and garden.
▼塔园实景，关注对景和视线上的关系，Tower Garden focuses on viewpoint and visual relationships
“Spetacular or fictional projects are valuable for they can both be seen as draft scheme for future architecture, and a container of ideas.”
▼张永和的垂直玻璃住宅（左）/石上纯也的金门港运中心（右），Vertical Glass House by Yung Ho Chang (left) / Port of Kinmen Passenger Service Center by Junya Ishigami
I think my philosophy on design is still emerging. Each project is a unique journey, and they need to start in right way, adjust constantly as my idea gradually clarified. I developed a habit of doing small scale researches and designs during time between I graduated from college and went to grad-school. They are series of exercise of critical thinking that keep my brain sharp. Before I start working on my own house, I had already collected a amount of ideas on my own. Many mature architects are doing similar things. Like Chang Yonghe, he worked on a lot conceptual projects in his early years, which brought a numbers of new ideas and ways of thinking. In Japan, there are also architects like Jun’ya Ishigami and Sou Fujimoto who will do a few conceptual designs before doing real projects to express what they think on architecture. There are also something like Archigram from Europe in the 50s or 60s. Most of them are Utopian designs in larger city scale, but they impact profoundly on modern day design. These spectacular or fictional projects are valuable for they can both be seen as draft scheme for future architecture, and a container of ideas. Borges talked about stories about Babel Tower-like Library, circular relics and garden of forking paths. Each story is a model of a tiny world. Each story is a series of literal architectural scheme. The very existence of them is the evidence of the importance of Architectures of idea.
▼坚持利用业余时间做小研究，进行思维训练，keep doing small studies during spare time to keep the brain sharp