Interview with Zhang Ying, Founder of URO Design Studio, China

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Zhang Ying

Zhang is an interior designer who believes in modern and simple designs, where the space can be shaped to the the client’s needs.

Interview with the 2020 MUSE Design Awards Winner - Zhang Ying

1Please give us a brief bio of yourself and your design background.

I graduated from Harvard University School of Design. I used to work in SOM, BIG, NAGA other famous architectural design firms. Now, I am the founder of URO Design Studio. I am good at integrating the silhouette of life into boutique retail commerce, art hotels, high-end private clubs, villas other places that directly produce life activities.

2What made you become/why did you choose to become a designer/artist?

I have been fond of drawing since my childhood and have been bathed in the atmosphere of art for a long time. Besides, I am more sensitive to information about pictures than words and Numbers. I like to express my feelings and state of life in the form of art.

3 Tell us more about your business/company, job profile, and what you do.

Most of the projects are based on creative interior design, and some old renovation projects will also be carried out, from the creative renovation of the building facade to the interior renovation, to make the interior harmonious and unified.

4What does “design” mean to you?

People live within architectures, and good architecture should bring people a visual and a human-oriented experience. Life is indispensable, where daily love promotes improvement, creating joy of their own while improving the fun of life.

5What’s your favorite kind of design and why?

Integrated projects from architectural, interior, and landscape designs, such as a small library, a charming coffee shop, a special furniture retail space, and so on. Projects close to life are presented through their own techniques, forms, and understanding of art, and at the same time improve their quality of life.

6To you, what makes a “good” design?

The architecture, interior, and surrounding environment interact and blend in. In addition to satisfying the functions, the space is interactive and interesting, and users are pleasantly surprised by the design.

7Describe your design style and its main characteristics.

Modern and simple, good modeling volume, space shaping to create the interior, with pure materials to set off the mood.

8Tell us about your design process.

Site survey - rough manuscript planning - understanding of functions - 3D model deliberating and shaping of space - detailing - hand deliberating - material selection - confirm the sample - construction.

9Do you think your country and its cultural heritage has an impact on your design process?

Of course, the influence of culture on a person is intrinsic. My own understanding of Chinese culture is that I have an extreme pursuit of “quietness”. Although I seldom use Chinese symbols and elements in my design, I have always been pursuing to create a spiritual place that can make people calm down from the perspective of the sensory atmosphere.

10Congratulations! As the winner of the 2020 MUSE Design Awards, what does it mean to you and your company and team to receive this award distinction?

Conceptually, it is an affirmation of our creative design, which continues to be exported in design.

11Can you explain a bit about the winning work you entered into the 2020 MUSE Design Awards, and why you chose to enter this project?

his project reflects my own personal style. The light in the project will change in different poses with different architectural structures. The atmosphere is created by using light, and space is shaped by volume without redundant or complicated lines.

12What was the biggest challenge with this project?

How to achieve a better and more fluent starting, turning, and closing in the space sequence so that people can have expectations and surprises when entering the next space and continue the story of the last space.

13How has winning an Award developed your practice/career?

There are a lot of people who recognize this award, and the award will let more people know about my studio and my style through this channel.

14What are your top three (3) favorite things about our industry?

Thinking: Divergent thinking and rigorous logic at the same time.

Creation: From nothing to something.

Status: At the forefront of quality of life.

15What makes your country specifically, unique in the design industry?

China is still in a period of massive construction, and at the same time, many old buildings are facing renovation and remodeling. With strong inclusiveness and many project demands, interior design is booming in China. Many good designers are trying to develop their own styles and fields. Colorful is the most suitable adjective to describe the current Chinese design industry.

16 Where do you see the evolution of design industry going over the next 5-10 years?

The size of the design company will be smaller, the style of each company is more distinct and unique, the designer will have less decorative consideration in the design where he/she will tend to architectural methods, and the focus on the overall volume modeling to do the interior scheme in three-dimensional languages.

17If you were a student entering this industry or an aspiring MUSE Design Awards submitter, what advice would you give them?

Use your own imagination to go far as possible, boldly create, and do not give too much limitations to yourself.

18What resources would you recommend to someone who wants to improve their skills in the design industry?

ENSCAPE is a fast, efficient, and easy renderer to use. Although the texture is not exquisite, ENSCAPE can express the scheme quickly, which is a good choice when the project design time is too short. In China, I think designers lose too much time on rendering. We can put more time into the design itself if this process can be shortened.

19Tell us something you have never told anyone else.

I hope that I can have more space to give play to my advantages with my background as an architect, get in touch with some architectural renovation projects, and make some cases of the collision and blending of the old and the new.

20Who has inspired you in your life and why?

When I was at school, I made a friend who always kept learning new things and tried new styles in a positive state. I learned to step out of the comfort zone and I constantly have a breakthrough myself in the end.

21What is your key to success? Any parting words of wisdom?

I don’t think That I have been so successful, and there is still a long way to go on the road of design from the state that I want to be. But I think the key to getting close to success is to do what I like and am good at, and keep doing it and working hard for it.

22Do you have anything else you would like to add to the interview?

Thank you very much to MUSE organizers for this honor.

Winning Entries

The Dance of Light | 2020

Interview with Zhang Ying, Founder of URO Design Studio, China

The project was inspired by the changing relationship of light in the building. In the space, the light will change with different...
(read more at MUSE Design Awards)

The Dance of Light

URO Design Studio specializes in creative interior design, harmonising and unifying the spaces inside.