Executive Director of HOOP, Mr. Ouyang Ying accepted UED magazine's interview in September 2014, part of talks reflect our company's culture, operation principle and the attitude to design appropriately.

UED: In 2000, as the same year Shenzhen HOOP was founded, Due to the promotion of national relevant policies, a better space for the reform and development of the construction industry has been provided. But there are numerous attendant problems plaguing the development of the construction industry. Especially for state-owned construction enterprises. In this case,could you talk about how Shenzhen HOOP founded and come through that period successfully?

Mr. Ouyang: The original idea of establishing this company is to solve the problem of survival better which is simple and material. I think it is same reason for many companies. Since the development of the construction industry in decade, many companies succeed ,but we are tangled. I never stop thinking the existence value of a architectural design firm like us .In my opinion, our firm really do not need to exist If we are just able to use a variety of graphics software, familiar with the various design specifications, and can make good-looking house. At least, it is not worthy for so many people to engage. We have been requiring ourselves to explore the essence of urban and architecture,.With rigorous rationality attitude ,we will make the design exist for people.

UED: Shenzhen HOOP has 14 years history with outstanding achievements now, there must have a relatively complete management system and project operation mode. Could you talk about how to manage the design company with more than 100 person?

Mr. Ouyang:We doubt and resist all stable and solid mode from the heart because of the strong influence by phenomenology. In this case , we really do not have much worth to talk about management system and operation mode. Far too many companies in this area are our learning model in this aspect.

Otherwise, Based on the cognition of establishing the company, we have our own attitude to management. Design company is absolute not for producting, while it is a place for a group of like-minded people to experience life and improve ourselves through architectural practice. In this case, we will provide a benefit environment of studying, thinking and practicing, strengthen right value orientation in daily work. After doing something meaningful both for the communities and individuals, we don’t need too much of the so-called management.

Besides, In the operating mode we also have some experience, the mode of traditional enterprises is pyramid .Later, most of them are changed into plat pattern, hope staff can be a customer and market-oriented, react instantly .Although this mode is suitable for ordinary production, it is not enough for innovative design company .The Innovation of design enterprises are more rely on internal dynamic which present the spirit of freedom, the true spirit of freedom is after catching the essence of object. Only under such environment, company will have real productive thinking and concept. Therefore, our target mode is the root mode. Inspired by Deleuze that we hope company is a multi-body, growing like the roots.

UED: Shenzhen HOOP has reached a long-term strategic cooperation with a number of well-known real estate enterprises. With the complete management system ,could you talk about how to communicate with owner, do you have clear service processes and how to hold the relationship between persistence and compromise about design in cooperation?

Mr. Ouyang:Communicate with owner smoothly is the basic quality ,How we communicate with owner is base on our cognition of design behavior ,we believe that design itself is the investigation and response of situation .In the whole process, we emphasize on foundation and immediacy to connect the questions with conclusion. In fact, the design work is to explore the possibilities and uncertainty which benefit us to achieve an acceptable plan for all parties.

Our service processes are similar with most design companies . Perhaps the little difference is that we insist on doing the reduction of phenomenology in every period. In the preliminary scheme period, reduction helps us find the original appeal and the basis of architecture, and In the implementation of session, it helps us to achieve the most direct and primitive way to respond.

It is tangled for many people to persist or compromise ,but we are not . Because we insist that different opinion about design is just the possibility which hasn’t been found by other architect . This cognition makes us open for different voice and stimulate us to re-achieving the natural and basic design .

Of course ,If the project is meaningless for our staff, we will not compromise to take it without any doubt.
UED: Shenzhen HOOP insist on innovating and providing out-standing plan for owner. As I know,
Shenzhen HOOP Phenomenology studies center has been established recently. In the view of most people , Phenomenology is one kind of popular philosophical thought in western country in 20th century. Could you explain the difference between "phenomenological" concept advocated by HOOP and our usual understanding of "phenomenology" firstly ,then talk about how Shenzhen HOOP Phenomenology studies center established?
Mr.Ouyang: To most people, like Mr.Shen Kenin ‘s " Phenomenology of Architecture ", Phenomenology is one kind of trendy philosophical thought indeed. But to us ,it is not only a epistemological philosophy but existential philosophy. In my opinion, Phenomenology is closed to

Buddhism, but it won’t predict afterlife ,more easy to understand. I even think that Deleuze's "A Thousand Plateaus" is the most appropriate and reliable description of the world .

The reason that we establish the Phenomenology studies center has several purposes below :
1.Phenomenology  guide us to understand the world, others, and our inner heart ,help us solve the problem of personal presence.
2. Phenomenology advance us to explore deeply about basic issues of architecture, such as,
human behavior, human perception, human experience, true colors of the city, architectural foundation and so on.
3. Phenomenology is the beginning of philosophy eternally, the reduction of Phenomenology help us find the infinite possible of presence in the original situation continuously . that is why Phenomenology is the most innovative philosophy.
4. Phenomenology lead us get to know masters like Hall, Mayne and Zumthor although we
don’t have opportunities to handle the project like them. Architect is not only technology and art, it is the dialogue between human and the live world.
5. Phenomenology helps us find the fundamental start of design if given more time .For a meditation project as example, we will seek the existence of architect for people to feel time ,feel the distance and entanglement between the body and the spirit .

UED; As so far, could you share any research with us, do any projects can explain the theme through practicing.?

Mr.Ouyang:Because Phenomenology study center has been founded for a short time, we have not reached rigorous research yet . But we can share some fruits . Such as human behavior, The traditional way to look at architecture is extremely crude, Just look at the behavior of the material and spatial dimensions is a distortion of the real situation, which directly functionalized space and over coding, make building becomes a container and machine. In phenomenology perspective of human behavior, it contains consciousness and body, mixed with spirit and material. From heart-moved to action, towards touched completely ,it is a whole reality ,performance of intention-arc. Only the architecture which base on the aspect of perception have the affection from time to space, and the memory time left to space. Therefore, the "Places" which people familiar with exist.

We keep investigating city as well. To us , invisible cities of Calvino is more a Study Guide than a literature. Truth is Phenomenology benefit our deeper understanding of it .Because the reduction of Phenomenology reveals the original dynamic mechanism of city development which contains those invisible elements such as words, appetite, memory, part of them should really be achieved and continued In the construction of the city.
we have some interesting research about design methods which starts from “The building can not be copied ”.It is not a joke of ‘the buildings all over the world is the same’. Almost Ninety percent architect reference the photos of completed project after taking over the task . Our studies shows that we should not blame architecture for their laziness because this may be caused by the existing form of architecture. The entire organized body of knowledge are constructed by the similarity principles of thought which has been stated in “creative evolution” of Bergson and “The archaeology of knowledge” of Foucault. As architecture history basically is kind of form and style history , which makes architect find inspiration from formed functional space and existing form and style more than finding a way out from the concrete design of the real situation. In our opinion, architecture history tells us about what had we faced originally not what had we done .In this case ,we perceive that " do not copy" must be from exploring the original face , leading by proximity principle thought. Maintaining the growth in all direction way of the bottom, which is familiar with “Let familiar life defamiliarization”  from Japanese master Yuanyanzaishuo.

The on-going Yichun project present phenomenological method well .It is a holiday experience project generally .Because deep foundation of local Zen culture and rich hot spring resources, Meditation and hot springsare the main supporting condition of the project. We have discovered that Meditation is to return to the original and reveal first mind by pointing to find one's true self .And the first step is experiencing and perceiving time ,through purifying space, time can be perceived.

This project leads us to think about the relationship between human and nature . “oneness” and “harmony organic” usually be used to describe the ideal relationship. while ,we don’t exactly know the facticity of harmony and organic .These volid description obstacle us exploring the concrete relationship between human and nature.

The basic relationship is to manage ,base on the availability of natural than visibility. Therefore ,we try to weaken the visibility of space ,strengthen the perception of space .Through this way ,the perception of people will open ,and the nature will spread for human existence ,which succeed in harmony .

UED: How to handle the relationship among people ,architecture and the world in this concept?

In your view, how the real architecture works and lead to what kind of situation ?

Mr.Ouyang: Talk about the relationship among people ,architecture and the world, we need to understand human and world firstly . In the sight of phenomenology. Human is a world, while world is a world. The world is not purely material and purely spiritual but the combine of mind and body. The "life world" from Husserl, the "flesh of the world" from Merleau-Ponty, and the "A Thousand Plateaus" from Gilles Deleuze are all talking about the truth. Human and world are identical, which base on the inseparability of spirit and material.

Based on the conception , Living is just a choice of people dwelling in the world, Is a fashion for conscious body to situated in the live world. Architecture is the way that world expands for human and exist owe to human ‘s open attitude to the world .

The real architecture is led by human existence, even glaring architecture has to find the foothold base on man's original exists. The real buildings make us perceive the existence of primordial nature, they are fashion for human to aware and comprehend “ already exists”. Being thrown into the present, human loss themselves in Average Everydayness made by so-called culture , knowledge and tradition. while ,architecture has the responsibility to pull people out ,make us face our own real situation and the separation of spirit and fresh directly ,led us desire that spirit is inseparable from mind eternally .

UED: After finishing reading “ collection of phenomenological study center”, I am impressed by ‘Building silhouette’ of invisibility and the below sentence .Could you simply describe the meaning of the photo ?

Mr.Ouyang: This picture is trying to explain the world in our eyes of and the true colors of the city .Without spirit , consciousness, appetite and memory ,city and the world are lifeless like dried skull. while ,these invisible part are the fresh and resources of the city ,present the true face of city and world .

Creating the buildings is the most natural action which include the process of investigate and respond to .The investigation is to be in the most widely information feld include the most basic response from natural images, and all others and inner information to information feld . Basic is to Back to consciousness, abandon all ready-made sensible pattern. Faithful to consciousness is a suitable attitude to face the information feld, only in this way , the real world and the true life will be back ,besides ,we can actually touch the tension and friction of material information which are the primary of investigation and response .The basic response should base on considering nature , others and inner heart ,caring about nature makes us fear the universe and the life ,find a way for architecture in the order of heaven and earth , be humble In the face of construction in each link .At the same time , caring about the others and inner heart help us touch the invisible life of poetry, and the poetry is made up of coincidence, segment and the frail but unforgettable homes .Response is to blend in the occasional snippet ,and recreate buildings from the beginning .