In Mark Magazine #24 (February-March 2010), Bert de Muynck | MovingCities published an interview with Beijing-based structural engineer Rory McGowan [ARUP and ARUP in Beijing]. “Learning from CCTV | an interview with Rory McGowan” is now online.
The interview, which took place at the ARUP headquarters in Beijing in June 2009, touched upon a lot of different topics; the engineering behind the CCTV-project, the evolution in fundamental engineering design in the near future, his involvement with the Tokyo Kansai airport team in the 1990s, his close collaboration with Rem Koolhaas/OMA during the past 17 years, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange building and Rory’s advice for the future generation of architects.
A few quotes from “Learning from CCTV | an interview with Rory McGowan“:
At first I was taken aback: it was outrageous but at the same time was a drop dead serious proposal. We all knew what the OMA circumstances were based on our prior experiences with them, like the hyper building and other projects in the 1980s and ’90s.
We had to demonstrate that any key column at any location in the building could be removed without disproportionate consequences. CCTV is actually overdesigned.
What we demonstrated is that by using the same material in another way you can create a completely different geometry and building typology.
The main feature of Kansai is its dynamic wing structure. Renzo Piano’s office had learned from the Bercy shopping centre not to do ‘a blob’ again. As a result, the geometry of the airport is a toroid and was seen as a really clever way to do repetitive geometry, redefining architecture in its wake.
Architects are becoming more and more deskilled. At the same time building design is becoming more and more technically driven.
- full article: “Learning from CCTV | an interview with Rory McGowan” – Mark Magazine #24 (Feb-March 10)
Other Bert de Muynck | MovingCities articles in MARK Magazine:
A Letter from Beijing | #09 (Jul-Aug 07)
An interview with Ai Weiwei (CN) | FAKE Design | #12 (Feb-Mar 08)
Olympic Architecture | #14 (Jun-Jul 08)
Babel for Billionaires | #15 (Aug-Sep 08)
Mongolian Private Meadow Club by MAD | #16 (Oct-Nov 08)
Anything That Is Good Is Called Lekker | #17 (Dec-Jan 08-09)
Local Hero | An Interview with Wang Shu (CN) | #19 (Apr-May 09)
The Importance of Slowness | Wang Hui (CN) | #19 (Apr-May 09)
Mr. Blunt | Keiichiro Sako | SAKO Architects | #20 (Jun-Jul 09)
Green and Tidy | mamostudio | #21 (Aug-Sep 09)