kengo kuma renovates wuxi art gallery in china with sculptural extension kengo kuma renovates wuxi art gallery in china with sculptural extension
mar 04, 2016

kengo kuma renovates wuxi art gallery in china with sculptural extension

kengo kuma renovates wuxi art gallery in china with sculptural extension
image © eiichi kano / all images courtesy of kengo kuma and associates

 

 

 

in wuxi, a city near shanghai in eastern china, japanese architect kengo kuma has converted a former cotton mill into an arts and shopping complex. the original red brick building, which dates back to the 1960s, has been completely renovated, while a sculptural addition lends the venue a new sense of identity. in designing the extension, the architects referenced the shape of a local stone that remains significant in taihu culture.

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a former cotton mill has been converted into an arts and shopping complex
image © eiichi kano

 

 

 

a shallow pool of water surrounds the gallery, delineating a threshold and providing a connection with the natural environment. the structure itself comprises a number of aluminum cast panels that allow sunlight to gently filter inside the glazed exhibition space. the extension forms am amoeba-shaped footprint, joined to the brickwork of the former mill. the renovated building provides further gallery space, alongside a range of retail outlets and offices.

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the structure comprises a series of porous aluminum cast panels
image © eiichi kano

 

 

 

benches and other furniture designed by kengo kuma are placed throughout all areas of the scheme, providing a unifying visual aesthetic. occupying more than 10,000 square meters, the development serves as a connection between the site’s industrial past, and its cultural future.

 

in recent years kengo kuma has completed a number of projects in china, including a folk art museum and a tea house formed of polyethylene blocks. see more work by the renowned japanese architect on designboom here.

kengo-kuma-wuxi-vanke-art-gallery-china-designboom-02
a shallow pool of water surrounds the gallery, delineating a threshold
image © eiichi kano

kengo-kuma-wuxi-vanke-art-gallery-china-designboom-02
the façade allows sunlight to filter inside the exhibition space
image © eiichi kano

kengo-kuma-wuxi-vanke-art-gallery-china-designboom-02
the renovated mill provides further gallery space, alongside a range of retail outlets and offices
image © eiichi kano

kengo-kuma-wuxi-vanke-art-gallery-china-designboom-02
benches and other furniture designed by kengo kuma are placed throughout the scheme
image © eiichi kano

kengo-kuma-wuxi-vanke-art-gallery-china-designboom-02
the development serves as a connection between the site’s industrial past, and its cultural future
image © eiichi kano

 

drawings

 

project info:

 

location: wuxi, china
architects: kengo kuma and associates
program: art gallery, office, commercial
area: 10,440.22 sqm
photography: eiichi kano

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