ELEPHANT WORLD, SURIN PROVINCE, THAILNAD
An Informal Amphitheatre Inspired by Local Tradition
Bangkok Project Studio
A large wood roof defines the space designed by the Thai architect Boonserm Premthada in Northeast Thailand’s Surin Province, inhabited by diverse ethnic groups, including the minority Kui people. For this population the family is comprised of humans and elephants living under the same roof. A truly distinctive characteristic of the project is an accentuated horizontality interrupted, varied or intensified by the architect’s compositional skill in establishing a link between two parallel planes that appear to slip past one another: the ground and the large wood roof. This notably thick element opens up at the centre to reconnect the heart of the courtyard with the sky, with openings at various points that favour ventilation. The roof manages to create a strong tension with the ground plane thanks precisely to openings that define columns of light and air, beneath which are planters for trees that will feed the animals and be tended by the Kui.