No. 5 House | The Plan
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No. 5 House

Rùn Atelier

Soaring house prices, severe pollution and unsafe food are some of the many problems facing city dwellers in China today. This has led to a rise in the number of people seeking to leave the city and return to the countryside in the hope of realizing the utopian dream of the ideal life. Numerous artists and architects have made the move, also shifting the focus of their work to these outlying areas. Architect Wang Hao, co-founder of the Rùn Atelier practice, is a forerunner, having always been fascinated by architecture “on the edge”, poised between the city and the countryside, a blend of European Modernism and local building traditions. After studying in Germany, Wang Hao returned to his hometown, a small village close to the city of Ningbo to start an architecture practice that reflected a professional identity that takes its cue from the bonds of community and family still very much a part of rural life. His work is permeated with the traditions that gave rise to the rural typologies of the area and the close connection between material and space. Wang Hao started with his own home - the Wang House -, built in the village where he was born. Horizontality and an enclosed courtyard separated from the road by three consecutive different height walls are the key features of this building that harks back to traditional lifestyles. The interiors, on the other hand, reveal the extent to which the architect has been influenced by modern European architecture, blended, however, with local cultural features. An example is the trapezoidal brick fireplace conceived as the pivotal element of the domestic environment. The brickwork is a clear reference to the architect’s childhood and traditional building methods, while the simple unadorned brick walls have a very Modernist feel. Wang Hao’s earliest work is a clear statement of his highly personal style. Examples are his use of the load-bearing brick wall and the traditional mixed...

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