Globalization isn’t the settling of a diverse group of people in one region. It is the exposure of events happening from across the world, in a direct and physically tangible way--an earthquake that occurred in the United States causing a tsunami in Japan; a storm beginning in South America ending as a hurricane on the East Coast of North America. There’s palpability that must exist to constitute an inter-connectivity within this Earth. One could comfortably believe that the internet has catalyzed the inter-connectivity that is required to globalize the world, however without tangibility, a full awareness of the person on the other side of the computer cannot exist. The question is, how does this physical network manifest itself in form? Globalization exists with a tangible infrastructure to support and represent it. And now, the society of humans has exposed a new form of crisis, the in-between of individualization and globalization. However, there is a common misconception, that the inter-connectivity that exists within and between cities, is the most extreme form of globalization.
This form within the height of a city is the physical, yet abstract manifestation of the network that globalization affords. From building to building, humans find themselves communicating at a constant and synchronous way. The wavelengths and understandings of this communication, in itself, bounces from within the heights of a city until it finds its ultimate destination.
While people are truly intertwined through a false sense of mobile immediacy of an existing network, the innate need tangible globalization still does not exist. Globalization is the connection of humans around the world with access and immediacy. It creates a succinct term for the network of every human to each other and generates a smaller world for life to exist within. If we consider the value that the Silk Road existentially provided, I must question how that value can return. A modern-day Silk Road provides this tangibility that is necessary to creating a physical globalization. It is an object that exists around the world to act not just as an accessible infrastructure to move people around the world, but a reminder of the inter-connectivity that exists. There needs to be this consistent duality of virtual and physical for globalization to exist. Inter-connectivity is a critical concept to achieve a world of positive dependency and advancement. China, more so Shanghai, provides the grounds necessary for both virtual and physical globalization. Inter-connectivity is not a new concept, however it has yet to successfully implement itself into our modern-day society. The social construct of Globalization is what it seems, just a construct— a theory. While our society has proposed, and catalyzed, the implicit exposure to globalization through, and after, the creation of the internet, we have not yet found the necessary tangibility to prove this concept could exist in our reality.
This experiment is exploring the mobile sector of network inter-connectivity. A river is the most primal form of separation, meanwhile bridges have been constructed to avoid this. While bridges connect two land forms, it doesn’t physically imagine the network that globalization affords humanity. The movable, appropriatable bridge-boat affords that physical manifestation that humanity needs to be aware of within globalization as a whole.
Shanghai industrial park: an infrastructure meant for one thing, or not. Infrastructure is the epitome of a physical thing bringing humans closer together. This questions that idea of whether or not human appropriation of a single thing can carry relationships. The industrial park in this thesis experiment is the provision of a template for appropriation to occur. Just like many large cities, what brings it character isn’t its original form, but what humans do with it. However, what is the most effective infrastructural template for this said appropriation to occur at its most heightened potential. Tubular forms are the epitome of utility distribution. The unused industrial park utility lines provide a backdrop or material aspiration for a new typology of human appropriation. Therefore the forms provide various materiality, textures, and shapes to satisfy many types of appropriation.