Great Wall Style: Building Home with Jim Spear

Images Publishing

Tessa Cheek

  • With stunning photographs and evocative text, Great Wall Style invites readers to discover a singular oeuvre of projects nestled in four small villages alongside the Great Wall of China.

    Its narrative illuminates the personal story and creative practice of architectural designer Jim Spear.

    From within the vernacular of traditional architecture, Spear has designed thoughtful and surprising spaces for contemporary life. These environmentally sound dwellings surround sustainable enterprises set in repurposed venues an abandoned schoolhouse is transformed into a restaurant and glass blowing workshop; a village hut evolves into an artisanal noodle shop; and a glazed tile factory provides guests with a lush retreat in its new life as an eco-lodge. Great Wall Style tells the compelling story of grassroots rural development through an exploration of material memory and the meaning of home. 

    "This is a book that shows clearly the power of great design."ᅠAbidin Kusno, Architectural Historian

    "The Great Wall landscape, which in many places has been scarred by the encroachment of ugly modern buildings, has at last been complemented by a sensitive,sustainable, and incredibly stylish project at Mutianyu,using existing vernacular architecture -- that of farmers.

    Hopefully Jim Spear's new vision in action,beautifully photographed within Great Wall Style,will pioneer a rejuvenation of Wall-side village life,revisited,re-evaluated and redesigned,and perhaps spark a wider appreciation of the value of what's commonly demolished in the name of progress,but what is increasingly extraordinary."

    William Lindesay OBE , author,broadcaster and founder of International Friends of the Great Wall. - Link to Great Wall Style website

  • ISBN: 9781864705638

    Dimensions: 300mm x 223mm

    Page Count: 224

    Publication Date: Oct 2013

    Colour: Full Colour

  • Specifier Magazine

    From an abandoned schoolhouse transformed into a restaurant and glassblowing workshop, to a village hut repurposed as an artisanal noodle shop, to a tile factory turned eco-lodge, these projects create a dialogue between tradition and modernity. Bringing eco-tourists from around the country and the globe, and using local building teams, these sustainable enterprises stimulate the local economy. Featuring full-colour photography by acclaimed Architectural Digest photographer Robert McLeod, this book is the story of a conversation between urban and rural, told in the vernacular of traditional Northern Chinese architecture. - April/May 2014

    David Hofmann

    The book is fantastic and having witnessed the evolution of Jim's dream I must say that the it truly captures the beauty of the houses as well as their interaction with their environments. What a great book. - Dec 2013


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