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Beijing 2009


  • Michigan Architecture–B.A.S.E.
  • Spring/Summer 2009
  • Instructor: Mary-Ann Ray

The Michigan Architecture–B.A.S.E. Spring Summer 2009 program will take place in the laboratory space of B.A.S.E. (Beijing Architecture Studio Enterprise) situated in one of Beijing's 300 urban villages. The students will witness firsthand the mechanisms of rapid urbanization and of rural to urban migrations through engaging directly with this particular urban village. The students will live and work in the environment of the village, providing an immersive experience and a direct relationship to its architecture, urbanism, and its inhabitants and their day-to-day lives.

Other projects and activities include the option for a week in a rural village in Anhui province where the students will live in a 27 room 17th century Huizhou house. In collaboration with the Peabody Essex Museum, we have been given the opportunity to measure and document this work of architecture for their collection. With the help of visiting Chinese scholars, artists, and architects, the students will also study Chinese perspective and representation as a challenge to current digital modes of three-dimensional representation. Finally, as a part of a program called B.A.S.E.line : In- and Out-Sourcing, students will design and prototype products ranging from clothing to objects to furniture to building components using the B.A.S.E.shops as well as some of the many fabrication shops, quarries and factories available in China. A public film series on Chinese Cinema and the City will occur during May and June at B.A.S.E., as well as a lecture series and weekly Friday evening "Burning (m) Eats" barbeque events open to young architects from the city of Beijing.

The Michigan Architecture China studio was first launched about five years ago by Assistant Professor of Architecture Robert Adams and it continues with the association with B.A.S.E. founders Mary-Ann Ray, Centennial Professor of Practice and Robert Mangurian.

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