Matter of Being

Arnold Wong, Keith Chan, Stephen Ip

Arnold Wong, Keith Chan, and Stephen Ip graduated in Architecture from the University of Hong Kong. While working in architectural offices, they have been actively participating in architecture and design-related research, activities, exhibitions, and competitions. Their works are recognized internationally, and locally, including the recent Hong Kong Institute of Architects Young Architect Award, “Victoria Harbour” Word Art Competition, Harbourfront Public Furniture Competition, and DFA Hong Kong Young Design Talent Award. Major exhibitions include Venice Biennale of Architecture, Hong Kong Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture, HKIA ”REVEAL“ Exhibition, Wharf Designer Chair Exhibition, and deTour, etc.

The Recycled Glass Brick Spiral

The symptomatic deterioration of our urban spaces, largely as a result of privatization, tightened controls, proliferation of mobile devices and, more recently, social distancing measures brought on by global pandemic, has prompted us to reconsider the possibility of a more creative approach to building our environment.

We focus on glass, particularly the second life of glass after it has fulfilled its purpose as beverage bottles, containers or shopfront windows, as we recycle it into a whole new type of building material. Through previous research and experimentation, we have found that glass can be recycled and molten back into primitive granules, which then can be mixed with resin and made into recycled glass bricks that are semi-transparent and fairly durable.

For deTour 2020, we propose to use recycled glass bricks to create an installation that takes people on a journey through different types of social distances. It consists of urban spaces of varying scales, all contained in a spiral structure built with recycled glass bricks. Moreover, the semi-transparency and perforations between the stacked brickwork induce varied experiences and perspectives, as opposed to our regular urban spaces that are often impermeable.