Date of Award

Spring 6-3-2023

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Architecture (MArch)



First Advisor

Jess Myers

Second Advisor

Christopher Roberts

Third Advisor

Sean Salstrom


As I observe the different ways human civilization interacts with water, I reflect on how I have interacted with it personally, in Califronia and Hawai’i. I also learn about the largest water-controlling infrastructure in China and its effects on the land and people. In Providence, I notice the infrastructure around the canal that keeps the water in. This relationship to water is unique to a post-colonial world where water is a commodity in which we spectate. What relationships did people have with water before we polluted the waters and created all this concrete infrastructure around it?

Through listening to Lorén M. Spears, member of the Narragansett Tribe, we begin to understand a different relationship. The environment we currently observe is documented but obstructed through these lenses I’ve created with glass. In obstructing our current perception, the visual and auditory effects are meant to create a space of reflection and questioning.


View exhibition online: Tian Li, Water Reflection



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.