archive transforms artist's shanghai apartment into painter's quarters

archive transforms artist's shanghai apartment into painter's quarters

chinese firm ‘archive’ cleverly transformed artist jinningning’s compact home into a studio. the artist’s 80 square meters residence is located in a high-rise apartment building in shanghai and initially included two bedrooms, a living room, one bathroom and one kitchen. however, the artist agreed to demolish all partition walls and remove decorative finishes from all surfaces and left the designers with a clean slate.

living room (view towards panting room)



the client only gave one requirement to the designers: to have a place to sleep. so, they converted the living room into a painting room, and the bigger bedroom into a storage room. the original kitchen, located along the window, was removed to open up the space, expanding the living room area. the ‘new’ kitchen transformed into a combination cabinet, a wall element that integrates kitchen appliances with other mechanical equipment such as the air conditioning, pipes, heating and refrigerators.

painting room



working with a small floorplan, archive worked efficiently with unobstrusive elements. as partition walls and dividers, they employed transparent and reflective materials such as polycarbonate hollow sheets that allow sunlight to pass through. transparent doors connect rooms such as the storage room to the corridor to further emphasize the open and connected spaces.




the big living room was divided into a painting room and a small living room area. however, the apartment’s sunny balcony was problematic for the artist’s painting area. the designers wrapped the balcony in plywood and created a sort of cabin, a small area that can be used as an extension to the room, or can become completely closed. by relocating necessary house areas and opening up potential spaces for the artist, the designers turned the apartment into a versatile painter’s studio. 

living room

outside of the painting room

the combination cabinet

view from corridor towards bedroom


view from corridor towards entrance


storage room

storage room view to corridor

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