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The Figure

Mohsen Mostafavi

穆森·穆斯塔法维

Dean of Graduate School of Design at Harvard University

Former Dean of the College of Architecture at Cornell University

Former Chairman of the Architecture Association School of Architecture in London

Editor-in- Chief,  Ecological Urbanism

Co-chair of the Harvard University Committee for the Arts

Member of the Executive Committees of Harvard Innovation Lab

哈佛大学设计学院院长

康奈尔大学建筑、艺术与规划学院前院长

英国伦敦建筑联盟学院前系主任

“生态都市主义”总编辑

哈佛大学艺术委员会联席主席

哈佛创新实验室执行委员会委员

The Interview

哈佛GSD工作室 | © Zhangkan Zhou

Why wouldn’t you first briefly introduce yourself to our GARLIC audience?

请您向GARLIC观众做一个简短的自我介绍

I’m very happy to be here. My name is Mohsen Mostafavi. I’m the dean of the graduate school of design. I’m an architect by training. I’ve been here at the GSD as dean since 2008.

很高兴接受采访。我是穆森·穆斯塔法维  ,是哈佛大学设计研究生院(以下简称GSD)的院长。我是一名建筑师,自2008年在GSD担任院长至今。

” I think there are many many different ways in which the connection to society trying to be, in a way, sort of more ethically and politically engaged institution.”

“我认为我们有很多很多不同的与社会相衔接的方式,使我们能成为在道义上和政治上都有所作为的组织。”

What effort GSD is trying make to raise a voice of designers, planners and get more social and political impact globally?

GSD 在提升设计师、规划师话语权以使之在世界范围内对社会、政治产生更多影响方面正在进行哪些努力?

So, one of the things has been very important for the school and for me personally is to find ways in which we as an educational institution transcend the traditional boundaries of what educational institutions are, and to be very engaged in the world by doing projects that establish very close ties, very close relationships between the academy and real world. This is something that GSD has been involved with for a long time. But I think we reinforced those relationships.

(我认为)其中一个对学校和对我个人很重要的思考,是寻找一种能让教育机构跳出传统教育机构的界限的方式,并试图通过(设计和研究)项目参与到现实中去,以拉近学术和真实世界的距离。GSD在这方面进行了多年的尝试,但我想我们近来加强了这种关系。

哈佛GSD2017春季巴西圣保罗设计课 | © Weijia Wu and Chenglong Zhao

Obviously, the most important or the most obvious version of this relationship is the works that we do through our option studios. You probably know that this semester for example we have 22 option studios. The vast majority of these optional studios are involved with working in different cities all around the world. And they work with government agencies, NGOs, private philanthropists who are interested to support research, and therefore we are in a way extending the traditional notions of pedagogy to established much more significant relationship between research and pedagogy and then be located in various places. So, at any one time, we would have studios in Asia. For example, right now we have the studio in Kuala Lumpur. We have studios in the United States, we have studios in South America, in Europe. And this does mean that it makes it a lot easier but also more direct for our students and our faculties to be working with real world issues, and to really, then learn from those, but also produce projects in relation to individuals who have influence to have greater impact.

很显然,加强这种关系的最重要也是最简明的方式便是我们设计任选课的教学。你们大概知道这学期我们有22门设计任选课。这些课程中的绝大多数需要学生在世界不同的城市进行研究。学生需要和政府机构、非营利组织、私有慈善组织合作。他们很愿意支持这样的研究,也因此我们能让传统教学方法的概念以某种方式延伸,以建立研究和教学之间更加紧密的联系,并将这种联系带到不同的地区。因此打个比方,在任何一个时候,我们都会有在亚洲(或世界其他地方进行)的设计课。就在现在,我们有关于吉隆坡、美国、南美、欧洲的设计课程。这确切的说,让我们的学生和教师能更容易也更直接地接触真实的问题,从中学习、形成作品,并以此与能够产生更大影响力的个人建立联系。

So that’s really one of the examples, but I think through encouraging the faculties through the establishment of what we call the D-Labs or Design Labs, through the encouragement of research more generally, I think the school has become much more engaged in terms of action in the real world. I think the other aspect of this is to do with our frame of mind, to do with the interests that we have, what are the projects that we focused on, what are the issues that we address, and the kinds of courses that we teach, the faculties that we hire. So, I think there are many many different ways in which the connection to society trying to be, in a way, sort of more ethically and politically engaged institution, has been worked on within the GSD over the last number of years.

这只是其中一个例子,但通过让教师建立我们所谓的 “D-Labs”,即设计工作室,通过普遍程度上鼓励个人研究,我认为学校可以对真实世界的实践方面更加投入。我认为有关这一问题的其他方向还包括我们的思维框架、对于专业的兴趣、主要关注的项目类型、解决什么样的问题、以及教授何样类型的课程、聘用什么样的教师等。所以我认为我们有很多很多不同的与社会相衔接的方式,使我们能成为在道义上和政治上都有所作为的组织。这便是我们最近几年在GSD所做的事情。

What is your imagination of GSD in the future? How do you see the designs, the designers, and professions will be like in the future?

您对GSD的未来怎么看?您觉得设计、设计师、设计行业的未来是什么样的?

I think one of the ways in which we have thought about professional design is actually to focus both on the disciplines that we have at the GSD but also in a way to go beyond the disciplines to transcend the disciplines. This is an ongoing work and I think we need to do more work on this. For example, we’ve been very focused on making sure that our department of architecture is fantastic. The work that happens is really great, but the same thing with urban planning and design, the same thing with landscape architecture, the same thing with our advanced studies program or MDes, and PHD. But the other exciting aspect of this has been to find ways in which people can collaborate and work across from architecture to urban design, urban design to landscape, and landscape to architecture these kinds of things. 

我认为我们思考专业设计的其中一种方式,是不仅仅局限于GSD已有的原则,而更重要的是思考如何超越、打破这些原则。这是一项尚未完成的工作,而且我觉得我们应该更多的关注这个议题。比如,我们一直致力于确保我们的建筑专业是非常优秀的,建筑系的作品也都非常的好,相应的规划与城市设计、景观、以及我们的继续教育项目和博士学位也是如此,但另一个更有趣的角度,是思考人们如何跨域专业界限,从建筑到城市设计,从城市设计到景观,或从景观到建筑等等。

哈佛GSD2017春季巴西圣保罗城市设计期末汇报 | © Nicky Li

We believe very strongly that the design profession if it is to be more successful in the future needs to also have the capacity to be more working as a team, which is what happens in practice, but what happens in practice is that it is not worked on this collaboration so much as also trying to create new forms of knowledge. So, it’s a collaboration, but I think what we want to do here is to go beyond the collaboration to really use the cross-utilization between the different disciplines to produce new forms of knowledge. And I think this is an important aspect of the work of the institution. This is what we have worked on. 

我们确信设计行业的专业人员都期待着未来更大的成功,他们也应具有在团队中工作的能力——这正是实践中的做法——但是在实践中,很多的合作并不完全是为了创造新知。它们是合作,但我认为我们想在GSD探索的,是超越合作本身而真正在不同的规则间实现跨专业的应用,以此创造新的知识形式。我认为,这是我们学院一个重要的工作方向,是我们一直努力的目标。

What is now beginning to transpire is that if we want designers to have more impact we have to also go beyond design itself and to work with entrepreneurs, to work with medicine, to work with engineering, to work with all sorts of people in other disciplines. On the one hand, increase the importance and value of design because this is not so high in many societies, and also through collaboration with other disciplines to really, in a way, make much bigger contributions. For example, the intersection between design, or urbanization, and public health is an issue that we feel very strongly about. And since you come from China, for example, in a country like China, the question of pollution and the relationship of the way cities are developing. On the one hand, you are pushing for progress, for advancement, and ironically, the more advanced you become, the more cars you would have, the more pollution you would have. So, in one sense, advancement and progress also have costs. And we feel that traditional modes of dealing with urban design, for example, just the master plan for expansion doesn’t sufficiently address these many other issues that one has to deal with, once you consider, for example, urban development. So, urban development needs to be now thought about much more holistically in terms of infrastructure, mobility, quality of housing, but also the quality of air, which before people didn’t really think in this way.

当今(设计行业)初露端倪的趋势是,如果我们想让设计师产生更大的影响,我们必须超越设计本身去和企业、医学、工程学合作——和所有其它行业的人合作。从学校的角度来说,我们要提高设计的重要性和价值——在很多地区设计的质量并不是很高。从另一方面,我们还要和其他的领域合作,来产生更大的价值。比如,传统设计和城市化、公共健康的交叉就是我们觉得很有潜力的议题。你们来自中国,那么比如在中国这样的国家,(一个重要的问题是)污染和城市发展的关系。从某个角度来看,你们在全力发展和进步;但讽刺的是,你们(的经济)变得越发达,你们就会有更多的汽车、更多的污染。所以简单来说,发展和进步也是有成本的。我们认为,传统的城市设计的模式,比如通过总平面规划而扩张的方式,已经不能解决像城市发展这种过程中产生的其他很多问题。所以城市的发展应该更全面地考虑基础设施、流动性、房屋质量等问题,同时也更应考虑空气的质量——这并不是以往人们考虑这种问题的方式。

I think at Harvard, we have a unique position to have very strong, the best professional schools and the collaboration between, in a way, the best design school and other best professional schools makes it very exciting for the school to develop new ideas, and new ways in which we can contribute to society, to the built environment, but at the same time, in a way, enhance the position of designers and to gain to garner greater respect in some ways in society for design more broadly.

我认为在哈佛我们有得天独厚的优势。我们能在最好的专业学院和一些最好的设计学院合作,探究新想法和可以对社会、对环境有所裨益的新方式。但与此同时,我们也可以从社会层面,或者更广阔的设计领域为设计师赢得尊重,提高设计师的地位。

“This is one of the great talent of designers that are to be able to understand issues, to process them, and to also make projections, to make proposals in a way.”

“这便是设计师的其中一个最重要的能力:理解问题、执行问题、预测未来,并从某种程度上提出设想。”

How do you see this kind of hybridization between design and other fields happening right now and in the future?

您怎么看当今以及未来设计与其它领域的跨学科融合?

I am very very excited about our design engineering program, the master together with Paulson School of Engineering and the collaboration between creativity and knowhow, or design and engineering. I think this is a very interesting intersection.

我很看好我们的设计与工程项目。这个项目是我们和约翰鲍尔森工程与应用科学学院联合创办的,是创造力和专业技术的结合,或者说是设计和工程的结合。这种学科交叉的确非常有趣。

哈佛GSD MDe工程设计研究生项目课程结构 | © www.gsd.harvard.edu

You probably know that many people in the field of engineering, and in the field of entrepreneurship, have been talking for quite some time about the concept of design thinking. And you hear this word, design thinking. In design schools, maybe there is not so much discussion about design thinking because people design. They are designers and they work on design so they don’t necessarily discuss so much design thinking. But it is very true that many other disciplines are looking to design, trying to see how designers are thinking and what are the ways that for example, imagination and organization come together, how we think, how we imagine, and how we can deal through design with the ways which we organize, we plan, we make propositions. 

This is one of the great talent of designers that are to be able to understand issues, to process them, and to also make projections, to make proposals in a way. I think this capacity together with engineering has been a fantastic collaboration to address some very big picture problems. For example, how do we deal with the question of food systems from supply side, from the gourmet and the quality of the food, the culture of food, distribution, waste. If you think about that, suddenly, when you talk about food, it’s not just what we eat, like the whole way in which we deal with production to the way we recycle of food. And you can think about the same thing about water, about light, about energy, like many things in a big picture. So, I think one of the exciting things about the Master of Design Engineering is that the people who go through that program like people who go through many of our programs, they are trained to really address significant issues. We want to take the same kind of experience and now start looking at ways in which we collaborate with other entities. 

你应该知道,工程领域或者企业领域的人近来一直在探讨设计思维。你大概听说过这个词,“设计思维”。在设计学院里,可能没有很多关于设计思维的讨论,因为人们都在做设计——他们是设计师,以设计为业,所以他们没必要对设计思维进行太多的讨论。但是很多其他领域的人都在观察设计、试图了解设计师如何思考,比如我们如何将想像力和组织力结合到一起­­——我们如何设想,又如何通过设计、规划、建议来实现我们的设想。

这便是设计师的其中一个最重要的能力:理解问题、执行问题、预测未来,并从某种程度上提出设想。我想和工程类学科合作,我们可以用这种能力提出更宏达的议题,比如我们如何从食物的供给、美食的评价、食物的文化、分配、浪费的角度探讨人类食物系统的问题。如果你以这样的角度看问题,那么当你讨论食物的时候,就不仅仅是关于我们吃什么的问题,而是关于食物的生产和循环的整体问题了。那么你也可以以同样的方式思考水、光、能源,将它们置于一个大背景下。所以我觉得设计与工程研究生项目中最令人兴奋的一点是,他们学习的经历应该像我们其他的专业项目一样,训练人们如何阐述重大问题。我们想用学习中同类的经验来开始探索和其他机构合作的方式。

哈佛Innovation Lab的设计思维沙龙 | © Zhangkan Zhou

So, I mentioned the importance of urbanization and design in relation to health systems. And we have just established, in the last a few months, a collaboration and new master’s degree together with the School of Public Health on urbanization and health. And I see that this kind of program would be very important because both the relationship with engineering and with the School of Public Health redefine the way in which we look at ourselves as well, and how we respond to big societal issues and imagine the same thing could happen in a way in relation to entrepreneurship. For example, the Master of Design Engineering is not just the collaboration between design and engineering, but it’s really design engineering and entrepreneurship. Partly because we need to also train architects who really know more about how they operate in society. We want designers who have the capacity to be really both leaders in terms of imagination but also leaders in terms of implementation, and in order for that to happen, we would need closer relationships with for example, the business school to learn from them about how you realize things, how you work. I think we want architects, designers, landscape architects, and planners who are very successful at what they do, and therefore, this is not only about finances, it’s not about money, it’s not about the personal, the wealth of individuals, but really about the training that provides a kind of strength to people to be able to make things happen. And I think this is a very important thing. We want to have people who are creative but also people who are able to implement to make things happen. I think this is where the whole question of the thesis of the school as producing great thinkers who are also great leaders in the field is something that is very important to us.

所以我提到了城市化、设计和健康系统相互联系的重要性。就在最近几个月,我们刚和公共卫生学院开始了有关城市化与健康的合作。可以预见,这种类型的项目会变得愈发重要,因为与工程类学科和与公共卫生学科的合作都重新定义了我们看待自己的方式,重新定义了我们如何回应在现实企业中可能已经在探讨的更加宽泛的议题,比如设计与工程研究生项目与企业实践的关系等。比如设计与工程研究生的项目不仅是设计与工程的结合,而是设计与工程和企业之间的结合。这样做的其中一部分原因也是我们需要训练建筑师如何在现实社会环境下工作。我们需要那些有能力在创意领域和应用领域同时成为领导者的设计师,而为了达到这个目标,我们需要和像商学院这样的机构建立更亲密的关系,向他们学习如何认知事物、如何工作。我想我们需要成功的建筑师、设计师、景观建筑师、规划师,而因此,这不是关于经营、金钱、积累个人财富,却是切实为人们提供让很多设想实现的能力,这是非常重要的。我们需要更有创造力但同时有能力实现创造的人。这也正是学院的一个核心议题,即培养优秀的思想者,但同时培养优秀的领导者,这对我们是很重要的。

 I think one of the exciting things about the school is that we have certain set of ideas that we believe that the future will be more and more about collaboration and in a way that sort of transdisciplinary practices.

我认为这所学校最令人兴奋的一个地方是我们对于充满更多协作、专业交叉的未来有一系列的成型的想法。

If we have more and closer cross-disciplinary collaboration in the future, what do you think the role of traditional design discipline, landscape architecture for example, will be under the more communicative and complex world?

如果未来更多的跨界合作产生,您觉得传统的设计行业比如景观设计在这种更加注重交流的复杂环境中会是什么角色?

I think that’s a very important question. This is why at the school I have been talking about the idea of disciplinary knowledge and transdisciplinary practices. What I mean by that is that your role as a landscape architect is absolutely important and significant because you are developing a certain body of knowledge, certain skills enhancing your creativity in relation to the discipline of landscape architecture. And by that, we mean there’s traditional modes of practice from gardens, parks, and now more and more understanding a larger scale of development also with landscape architecture, so more landscape architects are also thinking about urbanization, are thinking about sort of large scale of development and so on. So, your expertise and your knowledge in that field is going to be important.

我觉得这是一个非常重要的问题。这正是为什么在学校中我常谈到学科知识和跨学科实践。我这么说的意思是说,你作为景观设计师是很有意义的,因为你在探索某些知识、某些技能以增强你的创造力,这种进步和景观的基本原则是相关联的。从这一点出发,我们觉得传统的实践有像花园、公园这样的形式,而现在人们也在大尺度的开发中应用景观的思考,因而越来越多的景观设计师也在思考城市化、思考大尺度的规划问题等等。所以你的专业和你的知识在这种环境下是十分重要的。

哈佛GSD2017春季迈阿密景观设计课程致力于在区域和城市尺度应对海平面上升 | © Zhangkan Zhou

At the same time, your collaboration with others is going to take you outside of, if you want to, you don’t have to, but if you want to, outside of sometimes those traditional contexts of designing the park by being able to understand more the relation between a certain landscape project and its connection to a broader set of discussions of urbanization, a broader set of discussions of architecture and so on.

So, I don’t think that we should think about the role of collaboration or the importance of transdisciplinary practices as something that undermines traditional disciplines. If anything, we need to make sure that people who are in our school, they are the best in terms of the knowledge of the specific disciplines, and at the same time, they understand how their discipline can evolve can be enhanced through new forms of collaboration.

于此同时,你与他人的合作也将把你带出传统的公园设计的语境。当然这是在你有主观意愿的前提下,你不一定要这样做,当然你如果这样做了,你就会从传统的景观设计师设计公园的语境中跳脱出来进,而理解更多的景观项目在相关更大尺度的城市化关系下的讨论,或在更大尺度的建筑中讨论。

所以我不认为这一合作的角色,或者说跨专业实践会削弱传统的学科。至少我们必须确保我们学院的人在某种规则或知识体系中是最优秀的。与此同时,他们理解如何让他们的体系通过新形式的合作进化和提升。

This is why I also believe that the option studios, as they work, which give you, after you have gone through a core program of focusing only on landscape architecture. If you want, you can for example, take option studios that are made up of teams of architects and landscape architects, so that may be of your interest, but you may also choose to focus only on doing things that are emphasizing landscape. So, this is also necessary to present the school as a place that gives choice: it doesn’t mean that everyone has to do the same things. I think one of the exciting things about the school is that we have certain set of ideas that we believe that the future will be more and more about collaboration and in a way that sort of transdisciplinary practices.

这也是为什么我相信在你经历了集中从景观角度学习核心设计课之后进行设计任选课的作用。如果你愿意或感兴趣的话,你可以选择那些可以和建筑师、景观师合作的设计任选课,但你也可以专心研究有关景观本身的问题。所以学校作为一个可以提供选择的地方存在也是必要的:不是所有人都要做同样的事情。我认为这所学校最令人兴奋的一个地方是我们对于充满更多协作、专业交叉的未来有一系列的成型的想法。

At the same time, there are people who in the school want to focus very much on architecture and they don’t want to study so much the relationship of architecture to other things. They want to really only focus on that, as the same thing on landscape, and the same thing on planning. So, I think the school has the responsibility in a way to open up the future of the disciplines and to speak and to provide the kind of framework for connections between different disciplines between the GSD, between our school and other schools. And it also doesn’t mean that everyone has to do that. I think the question of options, choices, and being able to construct in a sense of your own research and your own pedagogy is a very fun part of being involved with the school and thinking about the future of the academy as a place that is in a way more open. I think that’s also good thing in a way supposed to think to be.

与此同时,学院中也有专注于建筑的人,他们不愿研究建筑和其它专业的关系,他们希望专心研究建筑,在景观、规划专业里也是如此。所以我觉得学院有责任将院内的学科变得更加开放。创造并提供用于不同学科连接的框架,即将各个不同的学科和学院相互连接起来,但这也不是说大家都必须这么做。我认为在学校里参与各种选项、选择,以及构建你自己的研究和教学方法是件很有趣的事情。我也认为未来的大学将会是一个更加开放的场所。这也是很多有益的事之所以有益的地方。

We looked at the website of GSD, the front page has some keywords which are computation, simulation, food, housing, energy, water, and China. What is your opinion in contemporary urbanism in a city in China? Why GSD has a keyword about China?

我们在GSD官方网站看到首页上的一些关键词,它们是计算、模拟、食物、住房、能源、水、中国。您对当代中国的城市化有何看法?为何GSD中国列为关键词之一?

There are two issues. One is really about the importance of the keywords and keywords as words that charge a certain set of ideas. So, we do not just say the departments. If you go to the website of every other schools of design, you see the department of architecture, or you see the department of landscape or something like this. Of course, we have that and we want people, and we love these departments, and we want to celebrate them and the faculty who are doing that. But on our website for our school, it’s also important to emphasize the value of ideas, of concepts, of thoughts and also geographies, locations. Locations also represent the certain set of ideas, the certain set of opportunities, culture conditions, and places that we operate, and we work, and we can learn from them. This is why we put sometimes these keywords. These keywords they change. They are not the same always on our website. We can have, you know, at one point it can be the name of one place, it can be the name of another place because it also relates to the activities that we have but also the issues that we are dealing with. So, think about it in terms of topics and topos, in a way of topography, of ideas, and of locations and geographies. 

这里包含了两个问题。其一是关于关键词的重要性,以及关键词对于某种思想的指向性,所以我们不是只罗列系别。如果你去浏览其他设计学院的网站,你会发现建筑系、景观系或类似的分类。当然我们也有这些专业,也需要人才,我们喜欢我们的专业,并尊敬在这些专业工作的老师,但是强调灵感、概念、思想的价值,或强调地理和地点对于学院的网站则更加重要。这里的地点也包含了某些思想、某些机会、文化、状况,包含了我们工作、研究、学习的地方。这就是为什么我们有时放上这些关键词。它们会变化,在我们的网站上不会永远相同。在某个时间可以是一个地方,在另一个时间点可以是别的地方,因为我们可能正在关注那个议题或者在那个地区有活动发生。所以我们可以把这些词看成话题或地区,它们可能关于思想、地点、地理等等。

Now China as you said is absolutely important for us. Of course, we welcome so many students from China who also love to be here. And we are very appreciated the fact that they come to the GSD. But I think It’s also that we have very good relationship with many schools and many talented individuals, architects, and developers in China. Because I think what has been happening in China over the last 20 years is phenomenal, in terms of the development, in terms of the growth, in terms of the experimentation, in terms of the knowledge, in terms of the enthusiasm of the younger generation. And I have seen in the last 10 years that there has been a phenomenally increase in terms of the quality of the candidates who are applying from China, because the schools in China are also getting better and better: there is more investment in the university system. Obviously, you know China thinks it’s important for its institutions, for its universities to be among the very best. And We have seen that universities like whether it’s Beida or Tsinghua or Tongji, all of these, they’ve been improving in the rankings and getting better at what they do. So, we feel this kind of collaboration with China is very important, because there are interesting opportunities and there is a level of openness and things can happen very quickly, in a way that in many other places if you’re working in Europe, may be things are very slow. In China, things can happen very quickly and that constructs its own set of ideas. It’s not just that it’s about acceleration. Acceleration produces new relationships, new arrangements, new possibilities in a way. So, I think that has been a very important part of our interest, is because we have, you know people that we appreciate and admire, and then there are opportunities for collaboration.

当今的中国显然是对我们很重要的议题。当然,我们欢迎很多愿意来美国的中国学生,我们也很高兴他们愿意来到GSD学习。但与此同时我觉得这也因为我们和中国的很多学校和有杰出能力的个人比如建筑师或开发商保持着很好的关系。我认为中国过去20年的经济发展、增长、实验性的探索、知识的累积,以及年轻一代的热情都是非凡的现象。我也看到过去10年间,中国申请学生的质量有显著的提高,这是因为中国的学校也变得越来越好,对于大学系统的投入变得更多。很显然,你知道中国认为让其教育机构跻身世界前列是很重要的。我们也看到像北大、清华、同济以及其他学校都在排名上有所提升并在他们所擅长的领域做的越来越好。所以我们认为和中国的这些合作很重要,因为首先那里有很好的机会,而且也有一定的透明度,项目可以在很短的时间内发生。其它很多地方比如欧洲,事情的进展就会很慢。在中国由于事情进展的很快,所以由此产生了一些新的思想。这并不仅仅是加快速度的问题。更快的进程会产生新的关系,新的组织方式,或者说新的可能性。所以我觉得这已经变成了我们很感兴趣的一个话题。因为我们欣赏和尊敬那里的人,而且那里还有合作的机会。

哈佛GSD2016秋季中国新兴建筑师主题展览 | © www.gsd.harvard.edu

I also think that it’s very important for us to support creativity and experimentation in China. So, you know that recently we’ve had really the first major exhibition of the emerging Chinese architects, designers at Harvard. And this is partly we want to know who these architects and designers are. And we also want to celebrate them, and we also want to engage them in a discussion and discourse. So, if you feel we can also make a contribution, this is something that is important.

我还认为支持在中国的创造和实验对我们而言也很重要。你应该注意到最近在哈佛我们刚举办了以中国新兴建筑师和设计师为主题的展览。我们一方面想知道这些建筑师和设计师是谁,我们也想以他们为榜样,鼓励他们参与到讨论中来。所以如果你觉得我们在这个领域可能有什么贡献的话,这就是其中一个。

You mentioned the role of media. I mean one thing that I can make as a friend of my collaborators in China to say is that for example in China at the moment, the level of design criticism is not so developed. And this still kind of needs to increase whereas the capacity of the designers and the quality of the architects is improving, but you do not have the same quality for appraising, for discussing, for the critical understanding of design. This is why we also need to support, for example, the architects, by bringing them, by engaging them in discussion, by being productively critical about the work that is happening in China. I very much hope that like you’re doing and some of our graduates are also become more engaged in questions of discussion, the manner of evaluation, how do you make judgements about work. You need that in order to improve the quality of the work. Without a social context, without a context where work is debated, discussed critically, then the work it also will be much harder for it to evolve, to develop. So, I think that we see this not only as promotion but also as engagement as discussion. And I think that’s why China is in a way so important on so many different levels of urbanization, architecture, collaboration, criticism, discourse, and of course the relationship with the academy which is so key how we are building collaborations and friendships with different institutions in China.

你刚刚提到了媒体的重要性。我觉得我可以借用一句我在中国的合作伙伴说过的话,那就是当今中国的设计批评还不是很成熟。这在某种程度上仍需要改进,因为设计师和建筑师的能力已经有进步了。如果不进行这种对于设计批评的改进,你就没有同样水准的评价、讨论、以及对设计辩证的理解。这也是为什么我们要支持建筑师来参与讨论,来积极的参与对当今中国设计实践的批评。我很希望很多我们的毕业生能像你们正在做的这样参与到问题的讨论或对设计评估的阐释中来,思考如何去评判设计。这是提高设计质量的重要环节。如果没有社会环境,没有对设计进行论证和批判的讨论的环境,那么设计本身也将很难进化和发展。所以我不把媒体看做一种广告方式,而是一种参与讨论的方式。这也是为什么中国在许多领域及其重要,比如城市化、建筑、合作、批评、著述等。当然还有我们与中国各个学院、各种机构构建有力的关系都如此重要。

The GARLICer

Interview

Zhangkan Zhou
Siyang Jing
Junbo

Editor

Editor: Peichen Hao
Editor:Chunfeng Lu
Editor: Qin Fang
Editor: Zhangkan Zhou
Editor: Yi Yin

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