aac 2008

aac 2008

"Architecture as cultural export – concepts for a globalised world"

The teaching at the 2008 aac took place under the roof of the general topic: "Architecture as cultural export – concepts for a globalised world". This issue will be dealt with by means of the three course topics and in view of the regional focus of the 2008 aac.


East Asia The focal point for the aac in the launch year 2008 will be East Asia. Alongside the German participants, who will emerge from an application process, the 2008 aac invites talented students from the Far East. All three key topics will be defined with special reference to countries such as China or Vietnam. Tasks will be assigned so as to facilitate identifying and defining the key cultural characteristics that influence the architecture of each country.

To what extent do Chinese and German concepts of tradition differ? What importance does a concept such as sustainability have in two completely different countries? Are there specifically German or Vietnamese visual idioms of architecture, or specific architectural identities? Following up issues of this kind in discussions and design projects will equally encourage cultural rapprochement and architectural creativity.

The Academy for Architectural Culture aac in Hamburg was launched by gmp founders Meinhard von Gerkan and Volkwin Marg. Supported by the gmp foundation, the aac offers highly talented young architects worldwide an additional qualification. In 2008, 32 students and graduates from Germany and East Asia took part in the course.

The first course was done as teamwork, on the theme of “sustainability”. In order to highlight the pre-eminent importance of climatic conditions for sustainable building, one class designed a building for northern China, the other a building for South China, where the climate is completely different.

The second course was an impromptu design on the subject of "Transforming Tradition into Modernity." The design took a project of the firm of Gerkan, Marg und Partner (gmp) – the planned parliament in Hanoi – as a basis, the task being to design a façade taking Vietnamese tradition into account.

The third course was entitled Icon – Metaphor – Identity, and was intended to show the inherent connection between the emblematic nature of architecture and its local identity. For this, a site in Hamburg’s Port City was chosen, for which an East-West Trading Center had to be designed.