It’s tough to be a new age citizen of the world these days. First, you must get used to feeding your online persona before your tummy, even if it’s protesting with hunger. Now, you’ve got to make mental notes of every plant, wall, cat and lamp post you walk by, just so your online grid offers something more than good-looking café lattes and your most recent meal. Well, if you’ve been in an “I’ve run out of ideas on where to go” rut, we can help. May we introduce, the SUTD campus.
The SUTD campus is unlike other institutions. Come inside, and you’ll feel the architects’ objectives behind this forward-thinking establishment – to create an open, interactive environment that facilitates collaborative learning.
Needless to say, with great architects come great architectural features. Strong aerodynamic curves, luxurious foliage and magnificent Chinese structures are some of the things you can find (and ‘gram) here. Oh, and did we say there is a massive amount of daylight everywhere? True blue ‘grammers, you know what magic daylight does to your images.
Words don’t do beautiful things justice, so we’ve taken the liberty to compile a list of what we think, are the ten most Instagrammable spots on campus. Curious? Scroll on.
1. Entrance/Exit of Upper Changi MRT Station
We know, this is strictly speaking not part of the campus. But how can we miss these striking avant-garde lines outside the Upper Changi MRT station? Train commuters should be familiar with these futuristic looking panels. They are what they see on their way to campus every day. Use one of them as warm-up before the real mission happens. Rock your most futuristic demeanour. Say you’re in a secret Avengers laboratory or something. The colours sure look quite the part.
2. Sports and Recreation Centre
Everything about the facade of the Sports and Recreation Centre screams modern. The sexy gunmetal shade of grey, the chic geometric design, and those perforated metals – so à la mode this season. Go crazy exploring its geometric chicness from different angles, contrast it with a clear blue sky, watch how it changes at different times of the day. Give your feed an instant air of architectural sophistication.
3. Pebbled Ground, Upper Deck next to Albert Hong Theatre
Snapchatters and IG storytellers take note. The acoustics here give a really cool effect. During one of our earlier interviews, the school choir was practising here. We aren’t sure if the pebbles have a part to play, but the reverberations in this space can make anyone’s voice angelic. So, if you’ve got something to say (or sing), this is the place to be. The pebbles form a pretty good zen backdrop too. Yogis, a crow pose over here perhaps?
4. Ke Zhong Ting (可忠亭)
In case you’re wondering “what a splendid replica this is”, don’t. Ke Zhong Ting is the real deal, and it’s one of the four historic relics donated to the school by action star Jackie Chan. These artefacts hail from the southern Anhui province of China and date back to the Ming and Qing dynasties, which puts them at more than 300 years old. Ke Zhong Ting sits strategically in front of the student housing, presenting a sharp juxtaposition between ancient craftmanship and modern architecture, introducing an intriguing layer to the campus landscape. A shot with this is literally a shot with history.
5. The Antique Houses
Part of the Jackie Chan historic collection, the antique houses are testaments to the statement “true beauty transcends time” (and maybe space as well, in this case). We can’t help but feel like we’re in a quaint Chinese river town every time we’re here. Made up of two separate houses Tang Zheng Tang （堂正堂）and Zai Xin Zai （斋心斋）, this culturally rich event space commands a quiet air of grandeur and elegance even amidst the modern high-rise buildings. Angle it well, and you may even pull a fast one on your followers – location tag: Anhui, China. #wanderlust #travelgram #relicsoftheworld. Definitely, a spot not to be missed.
6. Building 1, just outside the library
How about giving your Instagram game a bit of a space-age flair? The shape of Building 1’s architecture mixed with the building lights creates the perfect Sci-Fi scene that will capture the imagination of your inner SpaceX fan.
7. Field opposite Blocks 53 and 55
Amazing pictures are born out of the most understated places sometimes, like this patch of open space. On most occasions, it’s an ordinary field. Come dusk, however, watch as it transforms into a stunning theatre of shadows and light – thanks to the crevice between the staff and student housing blocks. As with all shots in the golden hour, time is of the essence. Plan yours beforehand. Be ready when the first golden ray hits the rift. You won’t have much time after.
8. North-East Corner of Eco-Pond behind Student Housing
Tucked behind the student housing, away from the hustle and bustle of the main campus buildings is this charming little space where campus residents wander to seek solace in some quiet me-time. For intrepid explorers, it’s a perfect rustic-ish location to spot a pensive #OOTD. Even better, wait till the pond is completely still. The reflections you get will be worth the wait.
9. Green Space, Ground Floor of Building 1
Green is the new black these days. And while everyone’s rushing for a revered picture with plant idols like palm leaves, monsteras and succulents, you’ll want to make yours different. Good news is, there is no lack of greens on this earth-friendly campus. Large green spaces like this with foliage in all shapes, sizes and varieties are constant narratives throughout the buildings. You’re sure to find a new IT plant here that can give your social definition of “greens” a refreshing spin.
10. Outdoor Space behind SUTD Library
Many places on campus can give you unrestricted access to strong, architectural images of the building’s signature aerodynamics curves. Our favourite is this cosy corner nestled within the outdoor confines of the SUTD library. There’s a certain dynamism about this place that trumps the rest. Perhaps it’s the presence of the installation, or the buzz in the library surrounds. We’ll leave you to find out for yourself.
Now that we’re at the end of our list, we can almost hear some of you go, “why is <insert place here> not in there?” Our list is only but the tip of the iceberg, and if you’ve got insider spaces that you’d love to share, we’d want to hear from you! Just put them in the comment box below and share away. Our social feeds will thank you.