Dezeen Magazine

Ten architecture and landscape projects by Academy of Art University

Dezeen School Shows: a San Francisco fish market transformed into a bathhouse is included in Dezeen's latest school show by students at the Academy of Art University in California.

Also included is a foldable and portable bed that combines a sleeping surface with storage for people who lack safe and stable housing and a house in Palo Alto that has a living green roof.

Academy of Art University

Institution: Academy of Art University
School: School of Architecture and School of Landscape Architecture
Course: NAAB Accredited M Arch 1, M Arch 2, B Arch MA, BA M Arch and B Arch IPAL programmes
Tutors: Mark Mueckenheim, Karen Seong, Sameena Sitabkhan, Mini Chu, Simon McKenzie, Maria Paz de Moura Castro King, Philip Ra, Eric Reeder, John-Michael Wong and Ethen Wood

School statement:

"We are a progressive design laboratory of highly passionate students and a distinguished faculty of practising architects who work together to explore the boundaries of architecture.

"Our interactive on-site and online studio experience harnesses digital tools to mentor students throughout our rigorous curriculum.

"We offer an excellent design education by developing each student's capacity to synthesise critical thought, architectural vision and technical comprehension.

"Our programmes engage with current global issues, empowering students to be changemakers and leaders advocating for social equity.

"Our diverse international community enables us to propagate a unique cultural response to build a better world."

Sequence of images showing a person moving and assembling a wooden bed

Group project: Stay Over Programme Family Shelter

"Stay Over Programme (SOP) is a family shelter located at the Buena Vista Horace Mann K-8 Community School, which was piloted to address the overwhelming number of families in the district who lack safe or stable housing.

"In partnership with shelter residents, Dolores Street Community Services, 826 Valencia, and the BVHM school, students design and fabricate modular beds and storage units while reimagining the dining room/after-school area to improve user experience.

"During Community Workshops with the Stay Over Programme families, parents and children provided design input through various activities, such as exploring kids' safe spaces and identifying what everyone needs for storage."

Students: Edgar Castillo, Lowai Ghaly, Mazen Ghaly, Andrew Hart, Mohamed Meawad, Petros Peritos and Shadi Vakilian
Course: B lab Community-based Design Collaborative Project
Tutors: Karen Seong and Sameena Sitabkhan

Sectional visualisation showing multi-zoned building in front of painted background

Unveiling Lost Identities: Investigating Migration Problems in Chinese Architecture and Culture by Qiyang Xu

"During China's rapid urbanisation, millions of rural villagers migrated into cities while leaving their children behind in villages.

"The separation from parents caused many children to display characteristics that include loneliness, misconduct and lack of confidence.

"In Zhaoxing village, with the development of tourism, local inhabitants have returned to work in their hometowns.

"The design aims to provide children with a warm place, help them regain their lost identities and give them a sense of belonging to a culture through the local architecture."

Student: Qiyang Xu
Course: Master of Architecture Thesis M Arch
Tutors: Philip Ra, Ethen Wood and Mini Chu

Plan view of rounded building on black background

Compost Tower – A new Typology for a Circular Economy by Kenan Beker

"The compost tower is a proposal for a new kind of sustainable waste centre for a future circular economy. When waste as a concept is eradicated, we can treat it as a nutrient or energy meant to be reintroduced to broader systems.

"The thesis proposes a facility for nutrient energy transformation and exchange. Rather than being located outside the city, the thesis proposes that these systems will be closely intertwined within the urban fabric as visible landmarks.

"As vertical embodiments of aerated static pile composting, these new building types will also deal with municipal waste and offer landfill alternatives.

"Future waste is proposed as a resource with the potential to be reintroduced into water systems, energy or heat."

Student: Kenan Beker
Course: Master of Architecture Thesis M Arch
Tutor: Mark Mueckenheim

Visualisation of space divided into seven strips

Boundary Connector – Future Port For Transforming the Defined Border Line between Hong Kong and Mainland China by Xiaoman Sun

"In 1986, Luohu port opened at the Hong Kong-Shenzhen border under the 'one country, two systems' policy to promote exchanges between the two areas.

"With the advent of the era of globalisation, the separating function of the border is still restricting the free flow of people and supplies.

"The living cycles and cultural circles of border residents continuously extend across the border and this process reconstructs the border space. This continually developing condition shows that the port is not just a line separating two places – instead, the port should be a place for cultural and economic exchanges.

"The project focuses on the Shenzhen-Hong Kong border and the residents living on this boundary, using architecture as a tool to resolve two different urban and social conditions."

Student: Xiaoman Sun
Course: Master of Architecture Thesis M Arch
Tutor: Mark Mueckenheim

Exploded view of site on grey background

Cultural Exchange – Chinese Cultural Center of San Francisco by Yi Ling Liao

"Since the nineteenth century, Chinese immigrants in the United States have made a significant contribution to the transformation and economy of California through mining, transcontinental railroad construction and through subsequent generations of active citizenship.

"The project seeks to establish street connections at three locations – creating spaces for art galleries and cultural attractions to promote interaction between tourists and residents alike.

"Cultural Exchange will reinforce Chinese culture by integrating an interpretation of cultural elements, establishing spaces of mixed opportunity.

"The goal is for Chinatown to retain its cultural identity while establishing a progressive public interface for residents and tourists alike."

Student: Yi Ling Liao
Course: Bachelor of Architecture Thesis B Arch
Tutor: Maria Paz de Moura Castro King

Sectional model showing multi-storey building

Western Addition Community Center by Lowai Ghaly

"The Western Addition in San Francisco is a diverse neighbourhood with a large number of immigrants. This community centre provides services to immigrant families by guiding them through the immigration process and connecting them to different resources.

"To promote stronger connections between parents and their children, classes are offered for parents to learn English and for the children to learn their native languages and cultures."

Student: Lowai Ghaly
Course: Bachelor of Architecture 4th year project ARH 410 studio course
Tutors: Karen Seong and Simon McKenzie

Plan view of coastal area

Bayfront Park Mission Bay, San Francisco, CA by Sol Lee

"Sol Lee embarked on a transformative project that is a testament to the power of creating spaces with profound meaning and purpose.

"This endeavour takes advantage of its stunning location by the Bay, with unparalleled views of the water and exceptional light quality throughout the day.

"The project capitalises on the restoration of an old fishing pier, positioned along the well-trafficked Bay Trail, to weave together the fabric of the community comprised of residents, tourists, workers and basketball enthusiasts.

"The design aims to carve out a strong, independent identity for the park, ensuring it's not overshadowed by the presence of the nearby Chase Center.

"It aims to offer a sanctuary from the urban bustle, shielding visitors from noise and wind, while providing a multitude of vantage points for bay viewing and a dedicated observation area, enhancing the public's engagement with the waterfront."

Student: Sol Lee
Course: LAN 610 Landscape Architecture Design Studio
Tutor: Toni Bava

Board showing visualisations and graphs

Speaking of Reality: Creating an Immersive Experience for Landscape Architectural Design Presentation using the Latest Technologies in the Field of Game Design by Jason Jeon

"This project explores how poster boards and videos have a limit in explaining architecture to teachers or clients.

"It explores different presentation methods and was informed by San Francisco's annual Game Developers Conference."

Student: Jason Jeon
Course: Landscape Architecture – Master's Thesis

Visualisation of a house with a living green roof

Residence Aerial by Justin Wagner

"This residential design in Palo Alto, California, exudes a serene yet vibrant charm, deeply rooted in a palette of native-inspired landscaping, embracing the local ecology and biodiversity.

"Sustainability threads through every element, from utilising drought-resistant plants to incorporating living green roofs, creating a space that's as kind to the environment as it is aesthetically pleasing."

Student: Justin Wagner
Course: Landscape Architecture Design Studio

People in a lofty concrete space

Metamorphic Insertion – public bathhouse and spa by Maud Indiana Vikjord

"The Fisherman's Wharf once held a special place in the heart of local San Francisco residents as a fish market on the coastal edge of the city.

"Today, it has a reputation as a tourist destination yet during the Covid-19 pandemic, travel restrictions left the area a virtual ghost town.

"The building, which occupies an entire urban block, is based on a continuous surface of concave and convex spaces inspired by the spatial and tectonic quality of an egg crate and on circular components made out of thirty different prefabricated concrete elements.

"The upper floor houses the bath, while the lower floor is inhabited by public restaurants, a spa surrounding a lush courtyard, and the changing and service areas of the bath.

"The project aims to bridge the gap between the two in a curated cultural bathhouse experience and an assortment of local businesses."

Student: Maud Indiana Vikjord
Course: Master of Architecture Thesis M.Arch
Tutor: Mark Mueckenheim

Partnership content

This school show is a partnership between Dezeen and Academy of Art University. Find out more about Dezeen partnership content here.