The Occurrence of Nearness within China’s Southern Literate Garden: A Case Study of the Pavilion of Moon and Wind in the Master of Nets Garden, Suzhou

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Abstract

Heritage and its conservation are facing great challenges in China today, where debates on principles, methods, technologies, and criteria in the conservation and reservation are raising a significant task for the identification, understanding, and articulation of essential values of heritage. The notion of Nearness, emerging in Martin Heidegger’s philosophy, reveals an intimacy of relatedness between humanity and other significant beings that are meaningful for human’s being. It provides a fundamental perspective to re-examine some of the essential values that are embedded within one type of built heritages in China, the southern literate garden. In order to explore such a spatial quality, a very specific space, the Pavilion of Moon and Wind in the Master of Nets Garden, is decided as the case to study. Employing phenomenological reduction, mapping, and spatio-visual analysis as its main methods, this paper analysed the spatial conditions that lead to the occurrence of Nearness within the Pavilion, as well as the mechanism behind. Above all, this research reveals Nearness as an essential value of the southern literate garden and suggest potential ways of creating it in contemporary human built environment. With the methodology that is applied and tested in this research, the occurrence of Nearness within other architectural cases can be studied in the future.
Original languageEnglish
JournalThe Journal of Architecture
Publication statusSubmitted - 16 Sep 2019

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