Synthetic natures – Hybrids for the Asian Games 2022


Synthetic Natures – Hybrids for the Asian Games 2022

March 29, 2023
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM


The distinction between what is natural and what is human-made, which has informed the distinction between the ‘wild’ and the cultured for centuries, has become blurred. So what is natural and what is artificial in the era of the Anthropocene? A kind of untouched, idyllic beauty is becoming increasingly rare. At this time, nearly 50% of the US population, an estimated 150 million, live in areas that don’t meet federal air quality standards. However, we also find strange beauty in the Anthropocene: unexpected side effects and alternate symbiotic relationships occur. We will be looking at newly developing mutants in nature and in buildings as they react to environmental stresses.

Our recently completed design for the 116 acre Eco park in Hangzhou Asia with 7 buildings among which 2 stadiums, produces such synthetic natures and ‘mutants’. By understanding the stadium fundamentally as a hybrid structure that also functions as a concert hall / event space for Hangzhou after the games, the building has transformed the park into a constantly evolving, active urban participant, rather than creating a static, representative object that would become a white elephant after the 2-week Asian Games. Strange intersections occur along the structures double curved shapes, where brass shingled surfaces intersect with steel & glass diagrid rings. These bulges not only express the mutant character of the building, but also add identity and character to the strange object, making recognizable that this is a neighborhood participatory social condenser.

This lecture is part of the series Beyond the Envelope organized in the context of the course ARCH 791 Beyond the Envelope: Pioneering Technology in Architecture, taught by Professor Tom Verebes.

Design Dialogues

In times of global crises, education, collaboration, and dialogs can represent positive “game changing” factors.

Through dialogue with international universities, industries, and practicing designers, the NYIT School of Architecture and Design Lecture Series will nurture dialogue on the education of the creatives of the future and will challenge the more conventional university curricula, and the narratives and communication strategies of the current professional practice.

Introduction and Moderation

Tom Verebes

Professor, NYIT School of Architecture and Design


Winka Dubbeldam


Winka Dubbeldam

Founder & Partner, Archi-TectonicNYC Miller Professor & Chair Weitzman Architecture Director of Advanced Research & Innovation Lab [ARI]

Winka Dubbeldam is the founder [1994] and partner of the WBE certified firm Archi-Tectonics NYC LLC. Widely known for their award-winning work, recognized as much for its design excellence as for its use of smart building systems, and innovative structures. Archi-Tectonics recently won the A+ Award for the Asian Games 2022 Masterplan and stadiums, the AIA award and RTF Futures Award for the 512GW Townhouse, and the THA award for the Inscape Meditation Studio.

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