Monday, September 30, 2013

Design Workshop in Sibu

Last week, Chai Si Yong, Ivy, Siew Ling, Felix and I conducted a one-day architectural design workshop at Kolej Laila Taib (KLT) in Sibu with 100 students taking part. They were given a design brief to ‘stretch the envelope’ of the typical terrace house to come up with ideas for a new housing prototype in Sarawak. The students were divided into groups of ten students from the various academic years to come up with solutions in 24 hours.

Here are some of my notes taken during the workshop;

'cut and fill' house

open sided house

the cage

The workshop received support from the college's course leader, Mr Allen Lipan who regards this as a rare opportunity for his students to broaden their design thinking. These workshops are part of PAMSC's mandate to encourage fellow architects to play a greater role in mentoring Sarawakian architecture architects.

The winning team gets to attend the PAMSC Design Forum in Kuching next year; all expenses paid, not bad for a day's work.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

A Stolen Afternoon

There was a time when a stolen afternoon meant something entirely different for Sam and I, but the thrill of mischief is similar. One recent afternoon, we found ourselves bored with what we were doing, I was drawing alternative layouts of a bathroom and she was preparing dinner. We decided to drop everything and sneak off for a coffee at my favourite part of town.

black bean coffee and tea company

Carpenter Street was quiet at three o'clock in the afternoon. The coffee wasn't especially good and neither was the pastry but we were grateful for the freedom to leave work behind and pretend we were on holiday for a while. Not talking yet glad of each other's company.

kim joo noodle shop - an institution for some
and across the road; bike shops and tea merchants

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Kuching to Damai - 5th edition

What started four year ago as a personal challenge for Eng Hooi has become a running event; on each New Year's Day he would try to run from his house in Kuching to Damai Beach - a distance of 33Km.
On the first attempt, his run ended at the Santubong Bridge (25Km). I joined him on the second year and we stopped at the bridge again; too tired to carry on. On the third year, we ran in heavy rain and took a wrong turn ending up back in Kuching.

Last year, 7 of us joined Eng Hooi on Labour Day and arrived at Damai Beach Resort. This National Day, 70 of us joined him - some starting at the Kuching Amphitheatre at 3:30 a.m. working their way to Damai, where we were joined by the rest at the Santubong Bridge for the last 14 km.
The 'RUN FREE' group of runners after completing their Kuching to Damai run
 This event was organised almost on the spur of the moment - it took three weeks to register runners, print tee-shirts and finalise logistics - done through word of mouth and social media. There were no prizes awarded and no medals given; only drinking water and words of encouragement were offered during the run.

 In conjunction to Malaysia's National Day 31st August, the words 'RUN FREE' was printed on the tee shirts - not only to recall our freedom from colonial rule but perhaps as a call to free ourselves from personal prejudices and differences and be united by the love of running (and one's country)

scenic views were temporarily ignored as runners struggle to complete the run
Nick (12, with cap) and Kieran (10) were amongst the youngest runners that day