A Solemn Space in an Hybrid Urban Landskape

Tadao Ando Architect & Associates

This art museum designed by Tadao Ando in Foshan was promoted by a patron who wished to create a new centre for promoting autochthonous culture and spreading
art among the community. The search for aulic space in a site bounded by a traffic-burdened commercial district to the south and a public park to the north nonetheless requested the mitigation of the effects of its noisy surroundings. The connection with the city is emphasised by paths that radiate out from the main building, crossing a landscape that dialogues with the water and planted areas. Chinese symbology guided the formal composition of the museum: four overlapping cylinders expand upward, projecting out over the floors below in an eccentric manner. To the north-east, a large full-height parallelepiped intersects the main building balancing the dominant curved character with a rectilinear counterpart. Inside, circular rooms intersect others characterised by the square perimeter and their interaction generates dynamic conflict through spatial differences. At the centre of the main volume, a large void defines the spatial nucleus that constitutes the hinge of the diverse levels of the gallery that slide past one another. The conception of the building, founded atop a typically Japanese spatiality, with the desire to evoke an interior world, nonetheless reveals a hybrid sensibility, mediated by the choice of construction technologies and a use of light that Ando himself refers

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