br Conclusions Chang Liu and Wang have often
Conclusions Chang, Liu, and Wang have often been regarded as the avant-garde or xianfeng architects in China. However, Wang has claimed that he is a rear-garde or a houfeng architect. All these terms are confined to a linear model of understanding or to a Euro-American-centric, universal, progressive model of modernity. Thus, these terms are inappropriate for labeling these architects. Having said that, the word feng is appropriate to describe these Chinese architects because it denotes ‘sharp, acute, cutting edge, and influential,’ as explained in Section 2. As discussed above, Chang, Liu, and Wang are sharp, acute, and cutting edge in terms of their self-conscious pursuit of experimentation and their proactive responses to social needs. These architects are also influential in producing discourse through their writings, competitions, exhibitions, curatorship, lecturing, and various awards. Since youfeng signifies the possession of feng, it is arguably a better phrase to describe these Chinese architects considering the heterogeneous trajectory of modernity in China.
Introduction For the first visitors to the Institut du Monde Arabe in Paris, standing in the open plaza and looking up at innumerable mechanical diaphragms set in the glazed south facade, the spectacle must have been extraordinary and unprecedented (Figure 1). The sight and sound of movement in each mechanical Stem Cell Compound Library across the facade, combined with the realization that this movement was linked to the constantly shifting modulation of sunlight, must have inspired the building׳s first visitors with wonder. It is now easily forgotten that Jean Nouvel׳s early implementation of responsive components was remarkable in scale, complexity, and architectural ambition at the time of its construction. What this project promised was an architecture based on change: response to change in the external environment and a corresponding modulation of conditions in the interior. Each of the building׳s facades, including the translucent panels of the internal courtyard, proposed a different method for daylighting and a different approach to the inevitable variability of natural light. Equipped with sensors, actuators and an array of mechanical diaphragms, the south facade of Nouvel׳s building proposed a pattern that would be adjusted in response to variations in the intensity of sunlight.
What is responsive architecture? As early as the 1970s, visionary thinkers like Nicholas Negroponte proposed that advances in artificial intelligence and the miniaturization of components would soon give rise to buildings capable of intelligently recognizing the activities of their users and responding to their needs, as well as changes in the external and internal environment. Tristan d׳Estrée Sterk writes of this early proponent of intelligent, responsive buildings, “Negroponte proposes that responsive architecture is the natural product of the integration of computing power into built spaces and structures. He also extends this belief to include the concepts of recognition, intention, contextual variation, and meaning into computed responses and their successful and ubiquitous integration into architecture.” Although the computer has not had as transformative an impact on the built environment as that envisioned by Negroponte, automated building components have become commonplace and are frequently integrated in facade systems as a tool for reducing energy consumption. Common examples include automated shading that reduces cooling loads due to solar radiation, and dimmable lighting fixtures that respond to photosensors, reducing the brightness of artificial lighting when daylight is available. In this sense, the responsive component has become a commonplace of contemporary architecture.
Types of responsive architecture One of the most influential writers in the theory of responsive buildings is Cedric Price, whose Fun Palace proposal defined the prototypical building capable of adapting to the needs of its users. This building, with its temporary circulation and enclosures suspended from a space frame superstructure, was intended to radically transform the experience of architecture and was a strong influence on ‘High Tech’ architecture such as the Centre Georges Pompidou (1977) of Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers in Paris which follows the spirit of the Fun Palace with its visible expression of independence between structure, services and skin which was intended to increase flexibility and adaptation to change over time. In reality, this approach has most often resulted only in the appearance of flexibility and despite its extraordinary influence on subsequent architecture Price׳s Fun Palace has proved elusive and difficult to successfully reproduce.