Nanjing Sifang Art Museum / Steven Holl Architects

© Shu He

The new museum is sited at the gateway to the Contemporary International Practical Exhibition of Architecture in the lush green landscape of the Pearl Spring near , China. It explores the shifting viewpoints, layers of space, and expanses of mist and water, which characterize the deep alternating spatial mysteries of early Chinese painting. This coming fall the Sifang Art Museum will open to the public.

Drawings, photographs, and sketches following the break.

Architects: Steven Holl Architects
Design Architect: Steven Holl, Li Hu
Location: Nanjing, China
Associate-in-Charge: Hideki Hirahara
Project Architect: Clark Manning, Daijiro Nakayama
Project Team: Joseph Kan, JongSeo Lee, Pei Shyun Lee, Tz-Li Lin, Richard Liu, Sarah Nichol
Associate Architects: Architectural Design Institute, Nanjing University
Structural Consultant: Guy Nordenson and Associates
Lighting Design: L’Observatoire International
Client: Nanjing Foshou Lake Architecture and Art Developments Ltd
Project Area: 20,000 sqf
Project Year: 2011
Photographs: Li Hu, Shu He,

watercolor

Perspective is the fundamental historic difference between Western and Chinese painting. After the 13th Century, Western painting developed vanishing points in fixed perspective. Chinese painters, although aware of perspective, rejected the single-vanishing point method, instead producing landscapes with “parallel perspectives” in which the viewer travels within the painting.

© Steven Holl Architects

The museum is formed by a “field” of parallel perspective spaces and garden walls in black bamboo-formed concrete over which a light “figure” hovers. The straight passages on the ground level gradually turn into the winding passage of the figure above. The upper gallery, suspended high in the air, unwraps in a clockwise turning sequence and culminates at “in-position” viewing of the city of Nanjing in the distance. The meaning of this rural site becomes urban through this visual axis to the great Ming Dynasty capital city, Nanjing.

section

The courtyard is paved in recycled Old Hutong bricks from the destroyed courtyards in the center of Nanjing. Limiting the colors of the museum to black and white connects it to the ancient paintings, but also gives a background to feature the colors and textures of the artwork and architecture to be exhibited within. Bamboo, previously growing on the site, has been used in bamboo- formed concrete, with a black penetrating stain. The Museum has geothermal cooling and heating, and recycled storm water.

© Steven Holl Architects

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Nanjing Sifang Art Museum / Steven Holl Architects" 20 May 2011. ArchDaily. Accessed 22 Oct 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=136551>
  • Lucas

    Still no Pritzker… Those guys no nothing about architecture. lol

  • Stephano

    I’m soooo bored of seeing these type of buildings – they are a plague!!

  • Małgorzata

    I would expect something more from Hall

  • Małgorzata

    Sorry, Holl

  • rolo

    in the view of the previous proyects of mr Holl, he have license to do these extravaganzas…

  • http://xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Jürgen Distler

    Please contact witch you!!!