I had a busy stressful week at work! I’m kinda beginning to think that life is really a series of problem solving and dealing with various aspects of issues. I suppose at one point in time, I would have classified such problems as a failure on my part to be perfect at my job, but now I begin to realize that I am and cannot be perfect. Making mistakes and also having to deal with issues and problems that arise in my job is well, just part of life. So every week new problems come up and then when Friday arrives, they have been solved and dealt with.
On a positive note though, last week was the Eco-B Forum held by PAM (Pertubuhan Arkitek Malaysia) to create an awareness towards sustainability and green buildings. I was thrilled my boss allowed me to attend the talk. It was amazing and inspiring. The two speakers that captured my attention were Elora Hardy and BC Ang of WHBC Architects. I absolutely loved Elora Hardy’s work on Green Village! She was a designer at Donna Karan and left because she was inspired by her father. Her father had a vision of building green using local materials (Bamboo which is indigenious to Bali, Indonesia) and construction methods that are just amazing.
I really love how they make actual models. I find this model making process forgotten in the design world today. Or maybe it’s just me. I tend to rely more on sketches and 3D softwares to come up with design ideas. The model making process we used to do in school has slowly died. Is it because we all do not have the time to experiment with models? Perhaps I should try incorporate and find time to come up with models in the design process. Elora in her speech also showed us videos of her team experimenting on life size models to ensure the safety and strength of the bamboo material construction. I also found it interesting that the Engineer would measure out from the model itself the number of beams and columns he would need for construction. This means that the model maker would have to be very meticulous and precise.
Next speaker BC Ang was really inspiring because I really enjoyed his thought process. The concept of simple solutions was interesting. Also the idea of conservation of heritage buildings whereby he questions – What are we conserving? Is it the facade design? In this case talking about conservation of Baba Shophouse architecture in which the facades have intricate detailing. When asked or required to conserve the architecture, are we talking about conserving the facade? And if so, what for? What about the history of the area? I loved the thought he mentioned where Ang said that we should continue our heritage by following the original ideas that led to the forms that make up the architecture of the past. Beautiful. I truly enjoyed his philosophy and thought process. His design inspirations are also simple.
So that was what I took back from the talk the other day. Simplicity of design and getting hands on with your design work! And I would really recommend checking out their websites! 🙂