Student Work

Live Music as Therapy for Displacement

Live music as therapy for displacement and architecture as an instrument of peace.

Ryan Zhong

I have lived in many different cities by myself. I have faced many major changes in my life. And I have felt lost many times. Whenever I feel lost, I walk down the street without any purpose and let myself be immersed within the surrounding moments listening to the live street music. As an emotional experience, being immersed in these moments gives me inner strength and peace.

The main program of the building is a live music performance space for people who are struggling with their identities and getting lost in their lives. It is intended for two groups of people: those who want to stay in the U. S. but cannot and those who want to go back to their home countries but cannot. The program encourages people to be active while giving them the option to be at rest. It also creates opportunities for people to learn and be informed while interacting with others.

The mapping studies the site as a city grid and analyzes how the rigid grid influences urban development and people’s behaviors. Where do people feel comfortable standing, sitting, and gathering? I am also looking for unusual moments that are happening around the site. For example, where people make U-turns despite the fact that there is a No U-Turn sign, where people cross the street in the absence of a cross walk, where people park when there is a No Parking sign, etc. And how does this relate to the existing city grid in terms of the distribution of the retail, restaurant, and residential buildings, and how does it influence the density of the city?

The idea of the physical model is to explore the relationship between the grid and the unusual moments and to extract the condition of the spaces from them.

The building offers live music as therapy for displacement and architecture as an instrument of peace.