Typical Forms

Ma-Tau Wall


Ma Tau Wall is an important feature of Huizhou architecture. In the villages where the communities live together, the density of residential buildings is relatively high, resulting in the prominent contradictions that are not conducive to fire prevention. The tall Ma Tau Wall, in the case of a fire in an adjacent residential building, acts as a source of fire isolation.






The Ma Tau Wall showed the owner's ideal pursuit of studying and being officials. Due to its design, the tall, closed wall appears to be like patchwork. Due to the Ma Tau Wall, the rigid buildings reveal a dynamic beauty. Looking down, the ups and downs of the walls in the villages present a scene of galloping horses symbolizing the freshness and prosperity of the entire clan.



The Quadrangle with Courtyard





It has been the main form of Chinese architecture for thousands of years. In the enclosures which are reserved but warm, Chinese ideology and aesthetic are fully revealed. It has nourished and cultivated the nation, becoming its most common traditional lifestyle. The courtyard space contains almost all the necessities of a home. The enclosure not only refers to the physical protection, but to the establishment of the relationship among people, forming a separate but complete space and a sense of security and belonging. It also forms a large gap, which ensures the privacy of the residents and removes the feeling of obturation, promoting air circulation and creating a comfortable living condition.



Vermilion Gate and Hollow Window





Highness tends to give a feeling of depression. Therefore, hollow windows are often carved on the walls with abstract patterns using homophonic and metaphorical methods, such as various dragons which symbolize royal powers express the wish to reach the goal. These patterns not only play a decorative and beautifying role, but also have the function of lighting, ventilation, dust prevention and space division. Vermilion, one of the red colors, is an opaque color made of cinnabar. Because the main colors of the palace's decoration are in gold and red, so vermilion represents nobleness and authority, and gates in the color symbolizes dignity.



The Carvings of Hui Zhou





In ancient Huizhou architecture, stone carvings, brick carvings and wood carvings are most exquisite which are excellent in the handling of raw materials and the integration with the entire environment. They can also be as fresh and elegant as ink paintings, especially the wood carving arts, adding to the quaint architecture. Carving figures, landscapes, flowers and other patterns on the indigo bricks is an important form of art in ancient architecture carvings which is mainly used to decorate the components and walls of temple towers, tombs, houses and other buildings, embellishing with sketches to make the buildings and landscapes blend into one, showing a strong folk flavor.



Pitched Roof





In China, pitched roof is almost synonymous with traditional architecture, occupying a decisive position. The design makes palaces, temples and other buildings unique, vigorous, invigorating and flowing. Pitched roofs have many advantages, such as energy savings, beneficiary to heat dissipation in summer and cold preventing in winter, as well as ventilation and drainage .








As China's unique architectural structure, the cornice, the upturned corners of eaves, is a special treatment and creation of the Chinese ancient architecture, commonly used in the corner of the roof of the pavilions, towers, houses, palaces and temples. Shaped like flying birds, they are one of the most important manifestations of national styles in Chinese architecture. The design of the cornice is ingenious and gives a pleasing artistic enjoyment on which often sculpted patterns, like unicorns, flying cranes, symbolizing a protection against evil.



Indigo Brick, White Wall and Black Tiles





In terms of architectural coloration, houses in the south of the Yangtze River are built with indigo bricks, white walls and black tiles, forming a rustic and elegant style. The general appearance of the water towns are a combination of bungalow buildings and gables forming a variety of undulating and patchy landscapes on the alleys and waterway revetments, presenting a light and concise scene in elegant colors.


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