The 2020 Pella-sponsored Undergraduate Thesis Prize winner is Christopher Cheng, for his thesis: Horologium for Einstein’s Dreams.

Many thanks to everyone who helped with this event under such unusual circumstances. We have great appreciation for the efforts of the other finalists: Peter Daian, Xinyi (Cherry) Chen, Aayush Anat, and Xuanyu (Jinko) Li, as well as the alumni jury: Danielle DiLeo Kim, Garrett Reynolds, and Chelsea Kilburn.

On an interesting note, we had more than 375 participants zoom in from around the globe.

Continue reading to learn more about Christopher's thesis:

An Horologium for Einstein’s Dreams is guided by the engagement and materialization of time through architecture. The project is a complex of three interconnected programs: a watch workshop, a watchmaker’s residence, and an archive. This settlement and its programming, siting, materiality, and details embody four different conceptions of time and therefore construct its polyvalent nature.

Mechanical Time is rigid and unyielding, distancing itself from the influence of surrounding context and the ambiguity and irregularity of bodily perception.

Bodily Time is guided by bodily perception, engaging the haptic body in space, understanding time as tactile reactions and visual impressions that can be anticipated but not controlled.

Fluid Time is variable and fluctuating, relying on a building’s unique discourse with its natural environment as a means to create a kinetic architecture, synchronously fluctuating with each day.

Natural Time is cyclical, directed by orientation and alignment to the arcs of the sun as a means to create an architecture rooted in its place.