Yangquan Culture Center is a cultural architecture specifically designed by Kokaistudios
with the intention to create a new landmark and the symbolic representation of
Yangquan city in Shanxi Province. The Local government requested Kokaistudios to
develop a project that could offer to citizens a multi-fuctional cultural infrastructure
inclusive of museum, library and exhibition center.
The idea of the project starts from the consideration about the existing condition of thecity of Yangchuan and its specific quality and morphology due to the heavy presence of coal mine industries. The city has a recent history of development and does not present any clear relation with the important history of this region, so that Kokaistudios decided to research symbolic point of riferiment into the historical repertory of the area around the city. The research of a common language between the architecture and the memory and identity of the society is the base of the architectural philosophy of Kokaistudios so that each new building could offer to the society a point of riferiment in which to recognize itself instead that a rigid superimposition forced by the outside.
Heaven and Earth
Kokaistudios adopted for this project a conceptual scheme of relation between human
and nature typical of the traditional Chinese philosophy. The relation between earth, sky and humans become the mainstream of the project by identifying three different
functions of the project. On the base rooted in the ground the hearth is rapresented by the heavy walls inspired by the walls of the old historical cities of Shanxi and guests the museum, representation of the history and the memories linked to the ground. On the upper level a permeable level of public functions open to the city fix the focus point of relation between the different functiond from the human point of view. On the top level of the building we have the representation of the sky where the natural daylight effects filtered by the custom design facades establish the relationship between the library and the surrounding environment.
In and out
The permeable access on the second floor creates a private space of calm and relax
typical of the traditional Chinese architecture composed by courtyards and links between different ambients of the house. Inside the building Kokaistudios created an internal courtyard divede in two sections by a suspended bridge, link between the east and the west portion of the building. The courtyard become a visual focus of the building and the core of the day life of the museum. The bridge connecting the two main portion of the building on the upper levels become the link between the internal functions and the meeting point where all the public functions are concentrated.
Compared with the enclosed feeling of the center courtyard, the terrace of south
entrance and square in north are the access gateway expression of a strong desire to
link the building with the. The terrace in south have been designed as a large system of
staircases and platforms in front of the water, opposite to hills on side of River Tao so
that it become a natural meeting point for the citizens and a privilege poit of observation of the panorama. On the other side the square in north have been conceived as a large covered square able to offer a polifunctional and flexible space where to hold exhibitions.
The dualistic communication between the city and the building through the public spaces and the iconic language use to create a symbolic representation of the history of the society will create a new dynamic interaction between the city and the buiding itself.
Material and Skin
The exterior surfaces of the building have been used as usual in Kokaistudios
architecture as the point of dialogue with the environment so to create strong visual
communication between the buildings and the people. In this project kokaistudios
developed an original system of façade composed by a complicate pattern of aluminum
alloy that represent the clouds in the traditional chines iconography. These clouds
combined with the glass façade or with the deep blue walls create and intense chromatic and visual effect, giving to the entire building a strong and unique symbolic appereance. The lower portion of the building offers to the human touch of the citizens the possibility to touch the sloping walls made by bricks typical technique of the historical cities of this reagion and connecting ideally the people with the history of their land. This building moduled on the base of materials that change their appereance according the light and the position of the human point of view have been intentionally designed by Kokaistudios as a dynamic architecture. The different perceptions and the infinity variations of the effects that the facades and the volumes offers to the eyes according the daylight or the special lighting system designed for the night time, reflects the dynamic nature of the building able to change and adapt together with the environment the city and the people.