ARC 608-1– Designing Village Acupunctures: A (Rural) Urban Landscape and Architectural Intervention for the Chinese Village through Ecological Practices

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Course Details

Course No.: 17553

Department: Architecture

Semester: 2016 Spring

Location: TBD – TBD

Meeting Day(s): Tuesday, Thursdays

Meeting Time: 1:30PM – 7:20PM

Faculty: Bassett

There has been a recent movement back to the countryside in China, and a reconnecting with the agricultural landscape for food and water. This occurs as intellectuals, artists and the elite are seeking retreat from the ills of the industrializing and modernizing Chinese cities.


This studio will be designing a series of architectural interventions with ecological planning in a rural Village in Yunnan province, China. Officials there are seeking to develop the area for tourism. We will develop a strategic plan and framework for ecological and agricultural tourism for the Village. Through mapping, cultural research and precedent studies, students will design a series of architectural interventions for the Village. These should renew relationships between and nature and culture, recovering the ecological and cultural landscape of the Village, while re- inserting and embedding the everyday social and cultural practices and processes back into the Village. Students will work across a spectrum of design scales. We will begin by mapping the larger territories of the Village’s regional landscapes, including its hydrological and agricultural systems. We will then zoom into mapping the public spaces of the Village through figure ground, the spaces in between, and Nolli mapping studies. Finally, we will propose a series of typological interventions at the architectural scale, which will re-interpret traditional village archetypes with hybrid programs. These might include the community center, the theater, the school, the ancestral home, the market, the courtyard house, the religious shrine, the pig pen, etc. These architectural interventions will operate at the intersection of architecture and ecological practices, as well as distilling and learning from vernacular typologies and patterns of rural settlement.