Glasgow Mackintosh School of Architecture MSA Stage 3

Vincent Pu Zhang


AJ student prize 2021 Shortlist

‘I strive for the proximity to a symbiosis between flawless and most profound form, function, and theory.’

Vincent is currently seeking a Part 1 position after achieving his Bachelor of Architecture (RIBA Part 1) with a first from the Glasgow School of Art and being nominated for AJ Student Prize.

Besides architecture, he works on oil painting, industrial design and innovative business ideas, while also educating himself on coding, physics, engineering, economics, and beyond. Vincent started oil painting at a very early age and became preoccupied with science and art with great passion in technology since childhood, always desiring to be a polymath. After majoring in painting for years, Vincent identified architecture as a field in harmony with his interdisciplinary interests and aspirations to contribute to the world and serve humanity.

Personal Website
Instagram (art)
Big Noise Balloch
Bo’ness Library & Gallery
Hogganfield Loch Bathhouse

Big Noise Balloch

With a critical and speculative design approach, the proposal projects a future scenario for the children of Sistema Scotland while also replaying the history by a meaningful geographical line. The envisioned system allows ever greater affordability, connectedness, and playfulness for the users. The design proposal aims to identify and respond to four main areas for the theme of Culture: 1) Tackling a spiritual crisis for faith and spiritual fulfilment. 2) Developing individuality and personal identity. 3) ‘Retreat but advance’, putting art at the service of society. 4) Encouraging equality and inclusivity, adaptable to any background, class and culture.

The ‘plug-in’ system replays and redefines what has been understood as capsule/pod buildings that have in history always effected sheer visual expressions without the ideal practicality. The project also experiments and investigates the use of carbon fibre for building structure in the envisioned scenario. Learning the consequences, it explores speculatively both the possibilities and impracticalities of this material, developing a thesis, or an antithesis.

Bo’ness Library & Gallery

The Bo’ness Library & Gallery is designed to be a distinct, attractive and new superstructure in the town with the capacity to bring stimulating functions and conviviality, by adapting and reusing the existing historic library. Evolving from an insignificant idea of nature displacing and reoccupying manmade structures, the project has since proposed creating a pristine and transformative landmark which has the potential to revive and restore the vibrancy and liveliness of Bo’ness in a sustainable way.

After overcoming the setback where the notion of a glass dome was checking the advance, the project has seen major struggles and breakthroughs. Concepts such as the Progressive interaction rooms to stimulate multigenerational and multidisciplinary exchange of knowledge and skills, a reading tower with balconies and central lightwell, and a bright transparent convivial room have all been concretised.

Hogganfield Loch Bathhouse

The proposal is aimed for creating unprecedented bathhouse experience of openness, closeness to plants, and engagement with nature without going outside, solving the general lack of transparency existing in most bathhouses. It creates a transitional experience from the confined intimacy underground to the open and spacious intimacy above ground, then to the outdoor intimacy on the rooftop.

The design of the continuous circular baths and sauna room features in this bathhouse, allowing bathers to have 360-degree panoramas of the site, interacting with the natural elements.