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Copy of 2019 Conference | Session - 5A Design Plus Hope

  • BSU Student Uion - Jordan Ballroom 1700 West University Drive Boise, ID, 83706 United States (map)

Title: Design Plus Hope

Presenter: Huicheng Zhong    Creative Director, Managing Partner, Lab D+H Shenzhen

Approved LACES course


Lab D+H is a small landscape architectural design practice founded in Los Angeles in 2014. Despite being relatively new, Lab D+H is currently delivering a strong and diverse performance internationally. Most prominently, its work is featured for its careful consideration of social issues, especially in China. However, the path has not been as smooth as it may appear. Facing a capital-driven market in China, the founding partners have been both fighting and adapting at the same time in order to keep their original design values – “Design for (with) the Public”. During 4 years of experiment and practice, the partners have been trying to set up a social agenda for each project at the very beginning, in which a clear public approach is taken as design methodology, even for commercial projects. This presentation offers a story of the growth of this small practice, through both built and ongoing projects.

Learning objectives/outcomes:

1.      Construction quality is always unpredictable in China due to a variety of reasons, especially for low-budget projects. Within an environment of unpredictable construction quality, what are the strategies to control craftsmanship with smart design framework?

2.      For real estate projects, clients often must maximize the sale value through the use of design. In the context of a profit-driven market, what strategy can we use to increase public spirit while meeting the client’s needs at the same time?

3.      In this presentation, space/form making will be discussed as well, as the success of a design relies on the balance and consistency of large-scale framework and small-scale details. Debate of the dynamic balance has been reflected in their work, as a learning curve and culture of the firm.