As a symptom of Chinese infrastructural expansion, the scenario of vast
residual spaces left out by highways and main transitional paths is an
ever more recurring panorama in the urban fabric of many chinese cities.
In this particular case of rapidly growing urbanised zones, but also
taking into consideration the political reality of an urbanisation relying
on authoritarian deployment of infrastructure, the discrepency between
public and private space becomes more and more uncomfortably controlled.
The vastness of Tiananmen square, the titanesque scale of the urban block
of Beijing - all consequentially framed by this infrastructure - together
with the mentalities and regulations that inherently adjust these param-
eters of living, generate quite alienating spaces for the individual.

In the context of China, one cannot look away from the question of the
value of the individual and his place in society.
Prior to standing in a larger crowd, I believe it is important to consider
the affiliation the individual has to have within a smaller cluster or
group of people (no community). Allowing for a clearer assertion of his
value and level of privacy, this transitional degree of subdividing the
mass is paramount for his integrity - yet so easily dissolved when set in
relation to this expansion.
Currently, I believe social crowds are being dismantled in urban China.
Calculated and scaled for much larger crowds, one might ask where, in this
picture, is the space for smaller groups and clusters of individuals. Does
it really allow for the hosting of everyday life activities that are es-
sential to urban living?

Embricated into this redundant infrastructural space, my project aims at
making use of this defined residual type of site by defining an escape
route in order to substract oneself from the city.
Alongside inserting a coupling of activities of different socializing
levels in order to stimulate a continuous use and occupation of the space
I am also generating frictions between these activities in order to stimu-
late the dynamic nature of social clusters,
On the one hand, I intend to use the Bathhouse and Market typologies as
key activities where spatial frictions are visual paradoxes in terms of
contrasts in rythm, pace, intimacy and publicness and produce a socially
alternative type of space.
In parallel to this, I am questioning the level of geometric fluidity and
treshold between these activities. A set of tectonic strategies start to
articulate new hybrid typologies for an architecture of variable flux that
modulate enclosure, counteracting the surrounding environment.


Prototype Arch
Material system testing

Oculus Prototype

Oculus Prototype making

Combined Model copy

Merged model testing:
oculus, planar space, transition wall and enclosure

Model Reading copy 2

Thermo formed acryllic testing model


Space subdivision and friction organisation

Final Plan: Lower and ground

Final Plans
Ground and Lower ground + Mezzanine

Pool edge friction

Bath Oculus:
Friction between pedestrian path and pool edge

Steambath Mezzanine

Steam room
Mezzanine transitional space as steam room

Final Render

Bird's eye view