Future 50: Jimenez Lai 01.08.13

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Icon asked a dozen experts and practitioners to nominate the people they think are, in some way, shaping the future. The resulting list of global talent is a snapshot that shows how young designers and architects are pushing the boundaries of their disciplines and trying to change the world

Taiwan-born architect Jimenez Lai set up Bureau Spectacular in 2008 after a nomadic career working with architects REX and OMA, and a stint with Atelier Van Lieshout in Rotterdam. Lai has two distinct strands to his work that explore the visual and aesthetic conditions of architecture in a playful, yet erudite, way. His comic books, such as the lauded Citizens of No Place, explore different aspects of space, architecture and urbanism introducing concepts in a manner that complement the visceral qualities of his built work – finished projects such as Three Little Worlds (which was on display in London in 2012) or his "building inside a building", White Elephant (2011). "Many people I meet dismiss aesthetics as an aspect of architecture that requires investment, and I find this a challenge," Lai says. "It feels like the world is an oyster – on a silver platter – which I will snort."

Chicago
bureau-spectacular.net

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