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Chinese House

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Author: Liu Jun;
Language: English
Page: 171
Publication Date: 05/2009
ISBN: 9787508515182
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We regard Chinese houses as a medium of social aesthetic values.Through recording and description, we seekafter a visualized analytical system by revealing the hidden meaning of individual houses. How can we find theaesthetic values of Chinese houses? We believe that by representing matters as they are, we are interpretingthem. Houses are the most obvious and handy objects of observation in our living space. A Chinese houseembodies the culture and customs of the Chinese people, more importantly, it reflects the fundamentalaesthetic views of the Chinese. What we did is to observe and present the images.Among Chinese architectures, the most iconic one is perhaps thelqan'anmen Rostrum, followed by the Bird Nest thathas recently become a national symbol, or the new building for CCTV designed by Rem Koolhaas. But how manypeople have closely observed the little-known common houses that abound in quantity in cities, counties, townsand villages?They can't provide news pegs; history hasn't bestowed the plain houses with any memorable events;nor can they offer any sparkling architectural concepts worthy of discussion. Compared with the famous landmarks,numerous ordinary houses have provided the space for most Chinese people's daily activities: living, doing business,enjoying leisure, working, studying, even paying homage to deities... These houses that are hard to describe andneglected by most people have formed the normal state of Chinese architecture.China is experiencing waves of construction unseen for centuries or even millenniums. From infrastructureconstruction with national investment to real estate business that affects the life of every Chinese, the topic ofChinese architecture covers a wide spectrum. Discussions over Chinese architecture have been heated, withmost studies launched from the urban point of view. All the debates, experiments and earnest appeals havetaken the city as the assumed target. But even inside the urban sphere, the explorations have been confinedwithin official buildings and massive commercial structures. On the contrary, common Chinese houses havebeen ignored with their familiarity and plainness. We have been walking in cities and villages, taking photos ofgrassroots houses and trying to reveal their aesthetic values.
Table of Contents

Preface
PublicSpace
Folk Residences
Communities
Door,Window,Wall
Courtyard
Temporary Buildings
Sample Pages Preview
Sample pages of Chinese House (ISBN:9787508515182)
Sample pages of Chinese House (ISBN:9787508515182)
Department stores have replaced movie theaters to become the town center.The oldest shopping area in anytown or city is often called Baihuo Dalou - Grand Building of 1 00 Commodities. Such old-fashioned stores havebeen replaced by trendy shopping malls or commercial streets, which are the throbbing heart of a moderncity. However, to catch a glimpse of the residents' real life, one can visit the vegetable market. Whether in smalltowns or cosmopolis, such markets are surprisingly similar.The stalls line up in rows, with inadequate lightingthroughout the year, but attracting customers who display the same eagerness in bargaining over a dazzlingarray of vegetables, fruits and others. Many housewives would drag small carts or carry a basket to the market.Wandering among the stalls displaying the season's freshest crops or meat, a housewife would carefully selectthe materials for nutritional meals of the day. Without spending too much, she can get both green leavesand tender pork. A Chinese housewife's ability to cook wonderful meal with limited cash can be amazingand admirable. Many Chinese would follow the same route on their daily shopping rounds. Perhaps very fewpeople really care about the building of the market. Without care, these buildings are invariably dusty and gray,or simply hidden behind billboards and various ads.Compared with shopping malls, shops in counties and towns are less flaring but more amiable. Residentsmay turn a small part of their apartment that faces the street into a small shop which sells daily necessitieslike vinegar and soy sauce. Such shops may function as a mini community center, as neighbors lounge abouton chairs provided by the shop owner, exchanging latest news in town. Such unobtrusive shops that scattereverywhere have provided much convenience to the neighborhood.For students…
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