For the purpose of making our colleagues more aware of the importance and impact of coexistence between construction and the environment, this year's third session of environmental education training was held in conjunction with the National Taiwan Museum and the Taipei City Museum in Taipei Expo Park. In the morning course invited Professor Shyu, Ming-Song from Ming Chuan University, to speak on “Reconsideration of Oriental Modern Architecture”. In his speech, Professor Shyu introduced three architects who are highly attached to the environment, Dahong Wang, Chi-Kwan Chen and Geoffrey Bawa from Sri Lanka. He talked about the early works of the three architects through their design thinking at that time compared with their works now, after years of fusion with the environment. These present works not only seem to be full of extreme aesthetic sense because of the combination of the environment, but also proved that introducing environmental landscape factors into the design thinking at that time is the right decision. Professor Shyu especially praise highly of the overall planning of Tunghai University by Architect Chi-Kwan Chen, which has now become a representative work of Taiwanese architecture. In order to compare the concept of architect Chi-Kwan Chen, Professor Shyu introduced Sri Lanka's national treasure, architect Geoffrey Bawa. Since he also did not receive professional training, so had great interest in the combination of nature and architecture and later became his architectural philosophy. Take his former residence for example, the house was a garden cottage hidden in the towering woods. The furnishings were very simple, but the building had large windows everywhere. Even if you stayed inside the house, your eyes would be greeted with greenery. The building itself retained the function of keeping out wind and rain but was completely integrated with the outdoor landscape. After decades, the perfect combination of architecture and nature are incredible from every angle. The professor also carefully introduced Dahong Wang's life and design philosophy.
In 1917, Dahong Wang was born in Beijing. He successively studied architecture in Cambridge University and Harvard University and was classmates with Ieoh Ming Pei in Harvard. In his 40 years of life as an architect, he designed more than 100 architectures. The most famous one is the National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall because he presented perfect fusion of eastern and western architectural features and is also the pioneer that led Taiwan’s construction industry towards modernism. Professor Shyu indicated that Wang Dahong's house on Jianguo South Road is the key embodiment of his personal style.
This building preserved a strong sense of the Chinese garden, sitting north facing south, and has to pass through a narrow curved path before reaching the entrance. Into the entryway, you face a red closet; turn left is the kitchen and turn right is the restaurant and living room, facing the courtyard floor-to-ceiling window. The door frame of the floor-to-ceiling window is supported by the upper and lower bearings, originating from the removable features of traditional Chinese architectural doors. The furniture was all personally designed by Dahong Wang, using white, black and red as backbone colors. There is a 165cm-wide circular “moon window” on the bedroom wall, leading to the garden.
Professor Shyu guided the students through this classic restoration building. With the help of many parties and the efforts of Taipei City Government, the building was decided to be rebuilt in the Taipei Expo Park and has recently completed all the construction work. At the scene, Professor Shyu shared his feelings from decades ago when he first saw the building and reconstructed the building bit by bit through the old photos and the impressions of Dahong Wang’s family, as well as many Dahong Wang’s design ideas and anecdotes.