kim min jae architects proposes shape-shifting flower parasols for beach dwellers

kim min jae architects proposes shape-shifting flower parasols for beach dwellers

paphos beach is a godly and mysterious border where the sea meets the land. for a long time, humanity has been living on the shore for survival – and as time goes by, it has become a place of recreation for modern people. hence, beach shelters were increasingly needed for users’ conveniences. with the project title ‘festival of nature’, hong-kong based kim min jae architects proposed a design aimed at transforming the beach space into a living nature that includes parasols with functions beyond sun-shade.

bird eye view



winning first prize in the paphos beach shelter competition, kim min jae architects’ parasol design symbolizes the shape of a flower, like a festival among objects in nature. the structure was influenced by the constantly changing appearance of the sea surface; thus, each parasol represents a living organism and through various stages of transformation, they reveal different gestures of flowers as seen in nature. on the other hand, a selection of marine tones that resemble sea surface color variations were used on the canopies to reflect that notion of natural morphosis. finally, the designs of the ‘flowers’ are completed with the users’ ongoing behaviors in the space where the parasols are installed. ‘as a result, this space is filled with gestures of living flowers and sea surface. at the same time, it turns into a festival space resembling a living nature, with various colors, shadows and users’ actions,’ describes the studio. 

site boundary and arrangement

functionally, the sunshade can be adjusted with seven steps to suit the users’ preferences, so that those who want to tan, who want to block out direct sunlight or want to enjoy the transformation of the parasol — can all be satisfied. technically, the flower structure follows the basic components of general parasols, but the design has been conceived upside down. as this parasol is demountable, a sand anchor is installed at the bottom end of the base tube to fix it easily on the ground without any additional equipment. furthermore, by moving the handle on the base tube up and down, the shape of the parasol is changed — and if it is completely opened when raining, water can be drained perfectly. 

view from the sea



the canopy fabric is made of high-density polyethylene, with a diamond grid pattern that expresses a rough surface seemingly obtained in nature. additionally, the geometry of the diamond grid enhances the colors and textures by changing the shape of the parasol.

demountable beach parasol components

fabric pattern and color types

transformation step 1

transformation step 2

transformation step 3

Transformation Step_4

transformation step 5

transformation step 6

transformation step 7



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: lea zeitoun | designboom

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