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Master of Architecture

Xinwei Lu

When I was browsing the last year virtual book, the picture of Wurster Hall reminded me of the excited feeling of first entering the studio. At the beginning of my architecture journey in CED, I was trying to catch up to the pace that the professor led and figure out if there is a rule or regulation I could follow to develop my project because during my undergraduate period, I always had an assignment sheet to allocate the certain functional space. I didn’t find it but I realized one more interesting thing: I was encouraged to jump out of my design comfort zone and test cutting edge methodologies into the development process. Soon I was fond of this learning style and my design philosophy also started to notice the things I ignored before. Besides space which may be the basic element of architecture, I tried to observe the behaviors, the feelings of individuals in the space, such things are composed like an indication for me to be more sensible in the design. The layout and color scheme of each drawing could also reflect the logic of architectural thoughts. In a nutshell, architecture is far more than space.

In addition, I benefited a lot from group work. While in the past, I often thought the project was myself so I could easily modify it by my own. But in the group work, the project is not only one individual project. So the realization from “my project” to “our project” was a leap for me to rethink about the design strategy of architecture. Under this circumstance, the most crucial part is the future operable potential or the adaptability of the design because it is supposed to be that all group members could modify and edit the project. What’s more, listen is more important than talk. As a designer, we need to have a comprehensive understanding of our team members and clients. In this case, we are able to provide a decent product for the people in the next work flow to deal with.

Another thing I want to mention is that the architecture could be used as a critical tool to analyze certain social phenomenon. While architecture is beyond the concept of buildings, it could include the proposal of economic tendency and the appeal of social edge group. Sometimes architecture acts like a statement that we pay less attention on how to build it. Instead, we are supposed to use architecture ways like creating space, selecting material to justify our statements or proposals.

Finally, it’s an honor for me to be one part of M.Arch cohort. At this current stage, we have already dedicated to our graduate careers, leaving meaningful and memorable projects which not only are the foundations for our next steps but also are the testament that we contributed to our M.Arch community. Thank you for the efforts in this unique year and I really look forward to see how you translate your wonderful design concepts and ideas into practice. Though we might choose respective paths, we shall stay in touch and help with each other just like what we did in our graduate periods.