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Centre for East-West Studies in Architecture and Landscape

We have been welcoming PhD students from East Asian countries in architectural humanities since 1996, and in landscape humanities since 2002. At first they came to learn about Modernism in the West, drawing on our expertise, aware of our alternative history and publications in that field. But we found it equally necessary to engage with their far eastern context, education, and assumptions, for better understanding both of its ancient traditions and of its current attitudes and methods. Our first two architecture PhDs were both partially engaged with Chinese geomancy and its Daoist roots, bringing to light unfamiliar ways of thinking and representation. Their investigations also revealed something of the potential richness of the only ancient culture to rival the European base of Greece and Rome, and whose architecture has yet to see adequate recognition.

There followed other doctoral studies concerned with rationalism, craft, the vernacular architecture of the Chinese Dong minority, the oriental influences on Alvar Aalto, and the development of conservation in Malaysia. The case study of Japanese architect Testuro Yoshida, pursued by Hyon-Sob Kim post-doc with the help of an AHRC grant, opened up the complex question of go-betweens, for besides being one of the leading Japanese exponents of the International Style around 1930, Yoshida also designed houses continuing the Japanese carpentry tradition. It was these more traditional works that raised the enthusiasm of European Modernists like Häring, Hilberseimer and Asplund whom he visited, and they persuaded Yoshida to write his famous book on the Japanese house and garden.

Selected projects

Two articles published in Volume 20 - Issue 2 - June 2016, Architectural Research Quarterly.

Completed PhDs supervised by Professor Peter Blundell Jones

Bong Hwangbo, 'In search of alternative traditions in architecture - a cross-cultural interdisciplinary study', completed March 2000.

Su-ju Lu, 'Dialogue with Feng Shui: An awareness of Chinese traditions', completed October 2002. (article 'House design by surname in Feng-shui' in Journal of Architecture, 5/4, (2000))

Tae Woong Kang, 'In search of rationalism in the architecture of Hendrik Petrus Berlage', completed February 2005. (Joint article with PBJ 'Hendrik Petrus Berlage's villas' in Journal of Architecture, 10/ 5, (2005))

Hyon Sob Kim, 'A study on Alvar Aalto and his experimentation in Villa Mairea', completed June 2005. (Joint Article with PBJ 'Villa Mairea, the Lost Memories' in ptah, journal of the Aalto Academy Helsinki, no.1 (2004).)

Xuemei Li, 'Chinese "Wind and Rain" Bridges - origins, forms and construction', completed October 2007. (Joint article with PBJ 'What can a bridge be? The wind and rain bridges of the Dong', The Journal of Architecture ,13/5 (2008), pp. 565- 584,.)

Young-Jun Kim, 'Traditional Houses and their Continuity in England and Korea', completed 2009.

Jayson Hsin-Yin Huang, 'Architecture of British Consulates in China,' completed October 2010.

Bing Jiang, City Gates in China.

Hui-ju Chang, Japanese Victorian Architecture in Taipei.

Chomchon Fusinpaiboon, Development of Modern Architecture in Thailand.

Completed PhDs supervised by Dr Jan Woudstra and accompanying publications

Jijun Zhao, 'Thirty years of landscape design in China (1949-1979): The era of Mao Zedong', PhD, 2008 (Refereed paper: Jijun Zhao and Jan Woudstra, 'In Agriculture, Learn from Dazhai', Mao Zedong's revolutionary model village and the battle against nature' Landscape Research, 32/2 (2007), pp.171-205.)

Sang Jung Yoon, 'History and conservation of gardens in Korea', PhD, 2009
(Refereed paper: Sang Jun Yoon and Jan Woudstra, 'Advanced horticultural techniques in Korea: The earliest documented greenhouses', Garden History 35/1 (2007), pp.68-84.)

Kairan Li, 'Landscape improvement and Scenic Sites in pre-modern China: a critical review', PhD, 2009 (refereed paper: Kairan Li, Jan Woudstra and Wei Feng, ''Eight Views' versus 'Eight Scenes': The history of the Bajing tradition in China', Landscape Research 35/1 (2010), pp.83-110. Articles: Kairan Li and Jan Woudstra, 'Ancient Chinese recreational preference reflected in the survey of traditional landscape series', in Tourism Tribune 24/6 (2009), pp.42-45; Kairan Li and Jan Woudstra, 'The modernity of Chinese traditional perception of landscape reflected in serial scenes', Chinese Landscape Architecture, 25/161(2009) (5), pp.29-33.)

Lei Gao, ''Breaking and repairing': Conflicting values in the historic gardens of China', PhD, 2010 (Conference paper: Lei Gao and Jan Woudstra, 'Keeping Yuanmingyuan: a mirror of attitudes and approaches to garden heritage in China (1900s-2007)' in Géza Hajós and Joachim Wolschke-Bulmahn, Rekonstruktion in der Gartendenkmalpflege (Hannover: Zentrum für Gartenkunst und Landschaftsarchitektur (CGL), Leibniz Universität Hannover, 2007, pp.52-55. Article: Lei Gao and Jan Woudstra, 'Re-solving Sharawadgi: some thoughts on its Chinese roots', Shakkei 17/1 (2010), pp.2-9.)

Current PhDs on East Asian topics supervised by Peter Blundell Jones

(submitted) Derong Kong, Carpentry among the Dong People in China

(submitted) Jianyu Chen, Architectural Education and Carpentry in China

Josepha Richard, Beyond Jiangnan: unravelling new fields of study in the gardens of China

Youcao Ren, Bionic metaphor in Feng shui: connection between humans and landscape

Xiang Ren, Hybrid buildings of the evolutionary cities and their cultural and climate responses to urban sustainability

Current PhDs on East Asian topics supervised by Jan Woudstra

 Hae Joon Jung, History and development of Scenic Sites in Korea

Fei Mo, Garden typologies and urban development in Shanghai (1850- 2010)

Selected events

10/03/2016: Seminar - 'Chinese Villages, Houses and Gardens'

30/06/2016: Symposium - 'Habits, Beliefs, and Tacit Knowledge: Everyday Ritual in East Asian Villages'

East-West Studies 2011/12 Seminar No. 1, Modernisation in Asian Architecture 1850-1950, Monday 21st November 2011, 2.00pm - 5.00pm, Arts Tower, Room 18.07.

Visits to East Asia by Peter Blundell Jones

8-16/11/2003 to Korea, gave lectures in Daegu and Seoul and visited various historic sites.

13-26/5/2005 to China, lecturing at Harbin for a week then visiting Beijing to see historic sites.

9-23/5/2009 to China, lecturing at Wuhan and Harbin, visited historic sites including Niejiang and Wudang Mountain.

20/10 to 4/11 2010 to China including Guangzhou, Shanghai, Suzhou.

Hosted conference session on east-west exchange: with Hyon-Sob Kim at the SAH conference in Pittsburg, USA, 13/4/2007

Visits to East Asia by Jan Woudstra

November 2009 to China: talking at the International Conference for Urban Design, HUST, Wuhan; also visiting Suzhou and Shanghai

May 2010 to China: lecturing at Ji'nan, and visiting historic sites Beijing

May 2011 to China: Lecturing at Harbin University and Beijing Forestry University, visit to Yunnan

Surging Wave Crop

Neixiang Yamen Crop

Maple Garden Crop