The Weekend!

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.

Models are made once the floor plan is finalized to come up with the overall design. 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.

Interior Furniture need to be custom made to fit the curvy floor plan design

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.

One example that I’ve kind of ripped of his website (as I did with Elora Hardy‘s Green Village) is the Wedding Showroom -Wall of Trees.

Thought process- If your neighbours build bigger and higher, you should go small/against it
Thought process- If your neighbours build bigger and higher, you should go small/against it
b
To create an outstanding facade AND get by with the 20ft building setback rule, they were inspired by a wall of trees..
c
The idea of painting the trees white came from the trees along the highway which are painted white because there are no light posts..(Ang mentioned that there is a special water based paint which is used and hence the trees will not die due to the painting)
e
I love how the design is so traditional in the sense it uses the pitch roof -which is a common element in the PJ housing area- and yet the simplicity of choice of colour and material makes is really memorable and cosy.

d

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! 🙂

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The Weekend!