Horizontal Skyscraper / Steven Holl / Matthias Wolff

© d.teil

In June, we featured Steven Holl’s latest Horizontal Skyscraper which hovers above a landscaped park in Shenzhen, China. Matthias Wolff, an ArchDaily reader and also a contributor to our Flickr roundups, shared some of his photographs of Holl’s building with us.  Wolff, aka d.teil, shot these images at the complex’s opening this past December, when some of the complex’s components – such as the hotel – were still under construction.  Since the grounds are open to the public, the project will truly affect a large scope of people, both natives and visitors of the area.  Wolff’s photos provide a clear understanding of the building’s varying materiality, as well as its situation within the designed terrain. What do you think of Holl’s project?

Check out more photos after the break.

© d.teil
© d.teil
© d.teil
© d.teil

Thanks again, d.teil, for sharing your photos with us!

Cite: Cilento, Karen. "Horizontal Skyscraper / Steven Holl / Matthias Wolff" 23 Aug 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 May 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=74396>
  • tom64kt

    steven holl’s projects in general is amazing, this is outstanding building. i’m so addicted to it.

    • http://www.fgoesarte.blogspot.com FELIPE GOES


  • kk

    lookings amazing now… be curious to see it in 5 yrs how much of those green lawn will survive and thrive being under shadow all the time….

  • http://www.sharwe.com sharwe

    I has come here in March , but it was raining at that time.
    Here had some of my photographs of this building.

  • Katsudon

    Amazing shots, amazing design!

  • frank Wilson

    Mr. Holl;
    Amazing you did it again. It is incredible the amount of character, texture, light , shadow and material. It is all the components perfectly tuned that only a true master like you could achieve. This definitely turns around architecture. Who cares what is gonna happen to the lawn in 5 years….what is that.????
    ..the question is what you are doing for architecture right now…and the answer is creating new WAYS…that’s all…
    you are generating CONCEPTS for the new generations to come. What a level of simplicity!!! how amazing again!!!

    • Katsudon

      “Who cares what is gonna happen to the lawn in 5 years….what is that.????”

      The guy who paid billions for it. :-D

      • dashen

        don’t worry, this company Vanke profit £ 6 billions last year. It’s just a good showcase for their business.

  • http://uptodayarch.blogspot.com up_today_arch

    For me, this building just the new evidence for china progress in today architecture. Grate applause for Holl, but too mach for labors, who’s quality is so close to german… chine accept everything new very fast way, and give place and resources for embody ideas…

  • Sergey Lebedev

    I’ve been working in China for a year. It’s amazing how donamic they are developing the whole country. There are a lot of buildings simular in scale and style, just not made by world famouse architect. The only problem I’ve seen is that those huge public spaces nice designed infact are often empty. There is nothing happening, feels like after atomic war )). I guess it’s not enough to plant trees and bamboo under the building. You have to design a public life, what people will exactly do there.(OMA do it very well).
    But design is really amazing. Even a door handle is reproduce the shape of the whole building. Steven Holl is a real composer of space.

  • Chavacano

    What is the point of lifting the whole building above the ground?
    All out of human scale, flooding? create more public and green areas? Or just: let´s show to the world the architecture we can afford. I´am not gonna deny, at first sight I was allured to it, but after the first glance, I´ve wondered if I want to dwell in a space like this.

    • d.teil


      funny this question and shows just how short you might be thinking here!

      1. the climate in shenzhen is subtropical. air ventilation and shady places are pretty welcome.

      2. holl just needed 3% from the site to cover this one with necessary cores, so you will have almost the whole site for a garden. You could be also designing a tall tower here, but will you have the same quality then? By walking through this piece of architecture you will be aware of different spaces with different qualities.

      3. It’s absolutely NOT out of a human scale, i am sure you wasn’t there, right? so how can people judge by seeing just images. As an architect i can just say: you must see, must feel architecture to judge about it! if you would lift up such a huge slab just 6 meters you wouldn’t feel free underneath, it wouldn’t be just that open. this building was lift up around 12 meters and exactly this height you will need here.

      4. Out of scale are tons of skycrapers which are built nowadays in almost every chinese city. When an architect do it so different as Steven Holl try it here, it will be hopefully change the mind of other clients. If you really like instead to live or to work in a 200meter tall tower you might have no idea about real good working or living conditions.

      5. In china almost every site is not open for the public, it’s just surrounded by boundaries with guards at the gates. So this design is completely different from the first sight and WE NEED ideas like this to re-think architecture in somehow.

      • chavacano

        thank you for the reply

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  • Neville Bartos

    Chavacano makes a valid point.