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ARCHITECTURE DESIGN STUDIO AIR The University of Melbourne Lee Qianning Michelle | 590224



I grew up in Singapore and is always very fascinated and excited about design and facades of houses since I was young. My passion in design of houses then grew and playing with lego became my favourite past time as I can build whatever designs I wanted in my ‘house’. I came to The University of Melbourne straight to 3rd year as I graduated in Singapore Polytechnic with a Diploma in Architecture which was given extra credit points and advance standing. A few months before starting University I work in a local architecture firm for 3months and work on a university project located in Singapore. However, I prefer to work with residential landed projects as a smaller group of architects are involved and the project takes a shorter period of time to complete unlike commerical projects which requires large amount of planning.

Previous Studio Work

During my 1st year in Singapore Polytechnic, we are to proposed an Eco House for a family of 4. Which I then came out with my design concept, “allowing nature to evolve into an interactive space”. As the owner wanted the house to be eco-friendly, nature is seeped into the space and less enclosures is used. The spaces between the outdoor and indoor spaces are interconnected and the outdoor deck is built bigger for interactive purposes. A courtyard and open terrace is placed in the middle of the house to allow the spaces to be interactive. To allow nature to seep in, protruding elements are built and there is a use of large transparent sliding glass doors and window panels. Thress bushes and water features are also placed around the house to block off unwanted views and sounds which gives the owner a sense of privacy. Weighing openness and enclosure, the use of less walls and columns allow air ventilation throughout the house. The house is also cross ventilated to allow the air to cool the interior spaces.

In my 2nd year, we design a SOHO (Small Office Home Office) for an Artist. I came out with the design intent experiencing tranquility within living spaces. The strategies were to allow the views to be facing greenery, having a quiet and condusive environment and lastly a spacious work area and at the same time having a clear segegration between work and living spaces. Planter boxes are located directly outside every units to allow users to be closer to nature. In addition, green walls and planter boxes with creepers are located at the shelthered terraces allowing users to relax and view nature.


Tadao Ando, Row House (Azuma House), Osaka, 1975 One of my favourite architecture project is designed by Tadao Ando, Row House (Azuma House), Osaka, 1975. Ando’s work is sensitive towards the relationship between nature, climate and also subject to social and cultural influeneces.

Moving on to the 3rd year final year project, we proposed a dance centre for T.H.E Dance Company. The concept was exploring the movement of a dance which I came out strategies such the juxtapositioning of spaces and having connections between the public and the dancers. Double volume spaces are designed to allow maximum interaction between the dancers and the public.

Experience with Digital Architecture Digital architecture is the ‘in’ thing in this century where many architects use to generate and share their ideas. One of the Architects that uses digital architecture is Frank Gehry. Hand built models are built to capture the design intent. After these models are refined, Gehry Partners uses Catia software to create three-dimensional computer models. In prior to digital architecture, I have used 3d softwares such as 3d Studio Max, Google Sketchup and Vray, Autocad, Revit Architecture to generate forms for my project massings. I also used these programes to do renderings of the exterior and interior views for my projects I haven exactly used Rhinoceros and Grasshopper for my previous projects thats why Im pretty excited to start this semester to learn more about these programmes!

The house sits on a simple, narrow rectangular site and is divided in two spaces. Ando designed the house to be in contact with light, air, rain and other natural elements to connect back to the Japanese life-style. One of the space in the house is exposed to wind and light to allow the user to interact with the environment. An internal private street is designed within its enclosure to give users a sense of itimacy and privacy. I like how Tadao Ando design his houses to be closer to the environment. This allows the use of less energy and electricity and it makes me feel relax and at peace when I am closer to nature.

WOHA, Alila Villas Uluwatu, Uluwatu, Bali, Indonesia, 2009 Alila Villa Uluwatu sits on a ecologically sustainable development located in the southern cliffs of Indonesia, Bali. The design of this hotel and villa is a fusion of vernacular architecture with a modernist design and uses Balinese architecture. The buildings are inspired by the local farmer terraces. Thus rather then using typical steep pitched Balinese pavilions which would have block the paranomic views, a terraced low pitched roof is used. The material of the roof is natural insulating and it blends with the natural landscape. The villa rooms are designed more like a inhabited garden rather than an interior room like any other villas. This make staying in Alila Villas interesting as it would make us feel closer to nature. The room allows extensive sunlight to enter which would reduce the use of artificial lighting. Every villa has a pool overlooking the sea which makes us ‘wake up to nature’ every single morning.

The materials used around the villa are mostly natural or sourced locally such as stone walls, timber, bamboo and even coconut. This makes the building environmental friendly. html

Michelle's ADS Air Journal  

Architecture Journal

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