Articulating Identities: Redesigning the Vietnamese Embassy in Washington DC

Chi-Thien Lam Nguyen, Roger Williams University


Born and raised in Vietnam, I have a great sense of pride of my country, of my culture. With a rich history of four thousand years, Vietnam has layers and layers of history, of influences, of architecture and thus, of identities. The intention of this thesis is not to try to identify and pin point what is Vietnamese and what is not, but to embrace them in an architectural setting. Furthermore, the chosen program, an embassy is also another study on identities, as one has to think how to blend the two identities, one of the represented nation and one of the host nation. Therefore, this thesis will explore and experiment different ways of thinking, while studying and analyzing different aspects of traditions, geography, architecture and history of both culture, so that the final product will be an articulation of identities, of Vietnam - with its multiple identities, of the United States, and of myself, a Vietnamese native educated.