You Can't Change China, China Changes You

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9789064507625: You Can't Change China, China Changes You
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John van de Water set off to a rapidly modernizing China in 2004, a young, enthusiastic and ambitious architect. His intention was to put into practice in China the internationally recognized ideas of NEXT architects, the Dutch firm in which he is a partner. The years that followed were hectic, with more than three million square feet’s worth of projects realized on Chinese soil. The boundaries of van de Water’s Western frame of reference required continual reviewing, as he encountered a wide range of conditions and situations informing the relationship between Western and Chinese thinking: incomprehension, confrontation, misunderstandings, acceptance, awareness, consensus and, ultimately, mutual benefit. You Can’t Change China, China Changes You is Van de Water’s personal, disarming and occasionally hilarious account of this compelling and confrontational quest for an authentic architecture. Are Western design skills able to evolve in a cultural context as radically different as that of China?

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