Mass Studies was founded in 2003 by Minsuk Cho in Seoul, Korea, as a critical investigation of architecture in the context of mass production, intensely over-populated urban conditions, and other emergent cultural niches that define contemporary society. Amid the many frictions defining spatial conditions in the twenty-first century, namely past vs. future, local vs. global, utopia vs. reality, and individual vs. collective, Mass Studies focuses on the operative complexity of these multiple conditions instead of striving for a singular, unified perspective. For each architectural project, which exist across a wide range of scales, Mass Studies explores issues such as spatial systems/matrices, building materials/techniques, and typological divergences to foster a vision that allows the discovery of new socio/cultural potential.
MINSUK CHO, AIA, PRINCIPAL
Minsuk Cho was born in Seoul and graduated from the Architectural Engineering Department of Yonsei University (Seoul, Korea) and the Graduate School of Architecture at Columbia University (New York, USA). He began his professional career working for Kolatan/MacDonald Studio, and Polshek and Partners in New York, and later moved to the Netherlands to work for OMA. Through these jobs, he gained experience in a wide range of architectural and urban projects implemented in various locations. With partner James Slade, he established Cho Slade Architecture in 1998 in New York City to be engaged in various projects both in the U.S. and Korea. In 2003, he came back to Korea to open his own firm, Mass Studies.
He has received many awards, including first prize in the 1994 Shinkenchiku International Residential Architecture Competition, the Architectural League of New York’s “Young Architects Award” in 2000 for his work at Cho Slade Architecture, and two U.S. Progressive Architecture Awards (Citations) in 1999 and 2003. Boutique Monaco was named a finalist for the International Highrise Award (DAM) in 2008 and nominated again for S-trenue in 2010. Recently, the Korea Pavilion was awarded the Silver Medal by the B.I.E. in the category of Architectural Design for the World Expo 2010 Shanghai, as well as a Presidential Citation from Korea.
His work was exhibited at La Biennale di Venezia for Dalki Theme Park in 2004, and for Different but Same Houses in 2010. He was also a part of the Open House travelling exhibition from 2006 to 2008, the New Trends of Architecture in Europe and Asia Pacific 2006–2007 traveling exhibit, and has been an active lecturer and participant in symposiums worldwide.
His representative works include “Pixel House”, “Dalki Theme Park”, “Nature Poem”, “Boutique Monaco”, “Seoul Commune 2026”, “S-Trenue”, “Ann Demeulemeester Shop”, “Ring Dome”, “Xi Gallery,”, “World Expo 2010 Shanghai: Korea Pavilion” and “Daum Space.1”.
KISU PARK, KIA, PARTNER
Kisu Park graduated from the Architectural Engineering department of Chonnam University and built his career in the area of architecture, the environment, urban and interior design at architecture companies such as ‘Sigong,’ ‘Space,’ and ‘Himma,’ and is currently working as a partner of Mass Studies.
The major projects he has participated in encompass the “master plan and the main building of Korea Polytechnic University,” “Seoul Metropolitan City’s day care center,” “I-Hotel,” and the “master plan, office and research buildings of the National Cultural Properties Research Institute” and “Seokyo-ok.”
JUNKOO KANG, ASSOCIATE PARTNER
Junkoo Kang joined Mass Studies in 2009 after his Master’s degree at the Graduate School of Architecture at Columbia University (New York, USA) and work at 5+Design(West Hollywood, USA). He is currently leading the project of Southcape Owner’s Club in Namhae region.
Before the study in the States, he had graduated from Architectrual Engineering Deparment of Yonsei University(Seoul), and worked at “Architectural Design Office of Hyundai E&C(Seoul)” and “Jun Itami a Research Institute(Seoul)” as an architect or designer, where he had been in charge of the projects such as “Hakoje Gallery”, “Pinx Museums(Duson, Water, Wind and Stone)” and “Biotopia Town House” in Jeju.
ZONGXOO U, KIA, ASSOCIATE
Zongxoo U graduated from Wonkwang University and from the Graduate School of Architecture, Kyung Hee University. Since 2004, U has worked for Mass Studies and designed for “Boutique Monaco” and “S-Trenue” among other projects.
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