Serpentine 2024 pavilion completed. Archipelagic Void by Mass Studies

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Mass Studies. Architect.- Minsuk Cho.
7th June – 27th October 2024.
Venue / Localitation
Serpentine Gallery. Kensington Gardens. London W2 3XA, UK.

Minsuk Cho. Mass Studies

Mass Studies was founded in 2003 by Minsuk Cho in Seoul, Korea, as a critical investigation of architecture in the context of mass production, intensely over-populated urban conditions, and other emergent cultural niches that define contemporary society. Amid the many frictions defining spatial conditions in the twenty-first century, namely past vs. future, local vs. global, utopia vs. reality, and individual vs. collective, MassStudies focuses on the operative complexity of these multiple conditions instead of striving for a singular, unified perspective. For each architectural project, which exists across a wide range of scales, Mass Studies explore issues such as spatial systems, building materials/techniques, and typological divergences to foster a vision that allows the discovery of new socio-cultural potential.

Minsuk Cho was born in Seoul and graduated from the Architectural Engineering Department of Yonsei University (Seoul, Korea) and the Graduate School of Architecture at Columbia University (New York, USA). After working in various firms, including OMARotterdam, he established Cho Slade Architecture in 1998 in New York City with partner James Slade. In 2003, he returned to Korea to open his firm, Mass Studies. Cho has garnered numerous accolades throughout his career. Notable among these achievements are his first win in the 1994 Shinkenchiku International ResidentialArchitecture Competition and the Architectural League of New York's Young Architects Award in 2000 for his contributions to Cho Slade Architecture. He also received two U.S.Progressive Architecture Awards (Citations) in 1999 and 2003. His work with MassStudies earned two nominations for the International Highrise Award (Deutsches Architekturmuseum-DAM), once as a finalist in 2008 for Boutique Monaco and again in 2010 for S-Trenue. The Korea Pavilion at the World Expo 2010 Shanghai was honored with the Silver Award in the “Pavilion Design” category from the Bureau of International Expositions, accompanied by a Presidential Citation from the Korean government. Choco-curated the exhibition “Named Design” at the Gwangju Design Biennale 2011, in collaboration with Anthony Fontenot under the direction of Seung H-Sang and AiWeiwei. In June 2014, Minsuk Cho received the prestigious Golden Lion Award for the best National Pavilion while serving as the commissioner and co-curator of the Korean Pavilion at the 14th International Architecture Exhibition - la Biennale di Venezia. Cho was recognized further by receiving the Hwagwan Medal Order of Cultural Merit from the Korean government.

Mass Studies works have been presented in various exhibitions, including the VeniceArchitecture Biennale in 2004 and 2010, the Vitra Museum traveling exhibition “OpenHouse” from 2006 to 2008, and a solo show titled "Before/After: Mass Studies DoesArchitecture" at the PLATEAU Samsung Museum of Art in Seoul in 2014. Mass Studies’ architectural designs and presentations are part of the collections and archives of the MoMA (New York), DAM (Frankfurt), Art Institute Chicago, and the MokchonArchitecture Archive (Seoul). Additionally, the 5th edition of Kenneth Frampton’scanonical “Modern Architecture: A Critical History” (2020, Thames & Hudson) highlights Cho and his work in the added South Korea chapter. Minsuk Cho is also an active lecturer and speaker, participating in symposia worldwide.

Representative works include the Pixel House, Missing Matrix, Bundle Matrix, ShanghaiExpo 2010: Korea Pavilion, and Daum Space.1, Tea Stone/Innisfree, Southcape, Dome-ino, the Daejeon University Residential College, Space K Seoul Museum, Pace Gallery Seoul, Vinegar Park: Choru, and the Won Buddhism Wonnam Temple. Current in-progress projects include the new Seoul Film Center (Montage 4:5), the Danginri Cultural Space(Danginri Podium and Promenade), the Yang-dong District Main Street (Sowol Forest), and the Yeonhui Public Housing Complex. Recently completed projects include the restoration and extension of the French Embassy in Korea, the renovation and extension of the Osulloc Tea Museum, and the Osulloc Green Tea Factory.



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