Food for thought | CHENG Design | sustainable, emotional, timeless design

Food for thought

House 7 Stairs | Sideview | CHENG Design | sustainable, emotional, timeless design

FLOATING CONCRETE: Stairway at House 7

By | Design, Food for thought | No Comments
I'm standing in the foyer lobby of the house [House 7]. Finally, here, I was able to utilize all these different experiences of working with finished concrete in a super-engineered sculptural way in this staircase. For myself, being so involved with concrete for so long, for so many years, this is the pièce de résistance of sculpture and function all coming together in one fell swoop. Each one of these treads weighs approximately 250 pounds. They were "sledded" in on tracks. The guys moved each tread and slid it on...
Read More
Warrior | ART-BREAK: Terracotta Warriors

ART-BREAK: Terracotta Warriors

By | Food for thought | No Comments

I played hooky from the office one Friday with my 14 year-old daughter. She was on school break. It was impulsive, but I was warned: you only have these waning, fleeting, post-pubescent days as a father to leave a lasting impression. So we went together, on a sunny San Francisco (!) morning to see the opening of the Soldiers of the Qin Emperor exhibit, where a few of the 7000 life-sized terracotta soldiers have been transported from the tomb in Xian, China, to the Asian Art Museum downtown. Before Rome…

Read More
Hogan/Mayo House 3 Project, Del Mar, CA 1996 Designer: Fu-Tung Cheng

Imitation can be the Highest Form of Efficiency

By | Food for thought | No Comments

It’s a fool’s errand to try to compete with, or imitate, Nature. Our gut-level, natural design instincts can sniff out most tacky attempts at imitation. Faux “cultured” marble, stamped concrete flagstone, and plastic roses are no substitute for the real thing. We may momentarily be fooled, but like sugar-and-salt-loaded fast food, they are full of empty calories. On the other hand, it’s foolish not to emulate, if not copy, something made by a craftsman, artist or innovator who may have spent years researching and perfecting a look that you admire––especially…

Read More
Tiburon House - Hand Drawing | CHENG Design

ARTFUL DEBATE: Hand vs. Computer Drawing

By | Food for thought | One Comment

A response to Enzo Tessitore’s editorial on Hand vs. Computer Drawing: A Student’s Opinion for design purposes in architecture. Instant disclosure: I have no training or experience working as a designer with CAD programs. However, I have worked out design problems looking over the shoulder of CAD literate associates at the monitor and found it a most useful and very efficient tool.   The touch-points of technology and human culture have fused into one another in the digital age like no other time. Debates will be argued on both sides…

Read More