Mei-Lan studied architecture at Cornell University where she completed several full-scale, built installations. Continuing her focus on the smaller scale and working details, she worked under Caroline O’Donnell for the winning MoMa PS1 proposal “Party Wall,” which was built and completed in 2013. Later that year, she moved to Basel, Switzerland to work for Herzog & de Meuron on several high profile projects, including the National Library of Jerusalem, an intimate apartment complex in Miami, and a large rehabilitative hospital project in Denmark.
Dedicated to finding more meaningful interactions between objects and their contexts, Mei-Lan moved back to the US to focus on materiality and sculptural form, working for years primarily in stoneware on hand-built ceramic vessels. Her determination to understand various tools and craftsmanship led her to co-found UME Studio, where she is influenced by an emphasis on objects and their relationship within space.