A new book examines the striking works of Zaha Hadid, Steven Holl, Thomas Heatherwick, and Kengo Kuma, all luminaries who have changed China’s skyline in their own way

Some of the most innovative buildings of the past 15 years can be found in China. The structures, by top architects such as Zaha Hadid, Steven Holl, Thomas Hetherwick, and Kengo Kuma, are striking works of design and engineering. In the new book Beautified China (Lannoo Publishers, $60), photographer and architect Kris Provoost celebrates daring designs across the country, highlighting the striking details that set these buildings apart.

“I was looking for unique shapes, unique configurations or buildings that simply standout in the city,” says Provoost. “The buildings in the Beautified China book are more than just buildings; they have the power to be more, to become a destination and gather people.” Provoost traveled to 16 cities in China to give a broad overview of the country’s architectural treasures. “It has taught me that there is an infinite supply of striking architecture in China, all built at a tremendous speed unimaginable in the west,” he says.

Provoost, who has worked at Zaha Hadid Architects and Büro Ole Scheeren, approached each building with an architect’s eye: “As an architecture photographer, the best part of my job is the opportunity to spend a large amount of time, sometimes three or four full days at a project, and try to understand it fully and photograph it in such a way that you can tell the story behind the building. I wouldn’t have been able to do this if I haven’t had the experience of designing architecture first.” – Read the full article at Architectural Digest