Stanislaus Fung lectures on Chinese gardens as well as the progression of building practice in China. He discusses in detail Zhuozheng Yuan, a celebrated 16th century garden in Suzhou, whose name could be translated “The Garden of the Unsuccessful Politician,” or “The Garden of Artless Administration.” He shows drawings of the garden from different eras showing different ideas of the boundaries of the garden. The garden is not a fixed object: mapping becomes a tracing of variable fields of foci. Fung discusses the role of temporal change in the garden, as seen in seasonal and night views. Extending the discussion of temporality into the present day, Fung argues that tourist guide books, often a mishmash of past and present, serve to connect past and present in a stimulating way. By lacking hierarchy, the compel the reader piece the city together in an individual way. He discusses the incorporation of individual memory and cultural experience. Fung goes on to discuss the difficulties in understanding China and Chinese building practice, in that image and media are the main source of information rather than personal experience.
Video Archive | Chinese gardens (3)
Perry Kulper introduces Stanislaus Fung after a series of announcements commenting on SCI-Arc’s then recent move into the Santa Fe Depot building. Kulper describes Fung’s expertise in landscape design, Chinese gardens and Australian architectural history. Fung states his presentation will be based on the images used in two recent publications rather than close readings and translations of historic texts.
Fung presents a series of aerial photographs, which are of interest in that not showing the perspective of the passerby, and showing both historic elements and contemporary contextualization. Fung argues that tourist guide books, often a mishmash of past and present, serve to connect past and present in a stimulating way.