combining high quality italian materials and chinese cultural elements, minax has completed the interior of a kerlite product exhibition hall with a teahouse, in shanghai. drawing inspiration from the word ‘zhai’, used to describe the study rooms of chinese literati, the architects have designed an elegant space, with great attention to detail. 

the space of stone and lotous 1abstract lotus pond

all images courtesy of minax



in order to explain the idea of ‘zhai’ further, minax shares: ‘zhai is the nickname of study, which contains the elements of meditation and self-reflection’weaving this local cultural meaning into the design concept of the product promotion space, the practice has created an interior with a strong experiential nature. the idea of ‘zhai’ has been implanted into the space, by integrating the elements of stone and lotus that were prominent in the ancient chinese landscape design. 

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a pond has been formed within the interior, with an abstract lotus made of water jet cut rock plates of different texture and reflectance. the lotus device casts interesting shadow patters on the water surface and presents a unique expressive force. the wall is also composed of thin plates with changing colors, which, together with the lighting, generates a high dynamic in the space.

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facing the three round windows, you can see wisteria spreading like the tide, forming an excellent view of the teahouse. the tea rooms are all wrapped in thin plates of different colors. the rectangular space, facing the garden and trees, presents more possible features under the gradual package.

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under the influence of form, light and scenery, the space and function of ritual sense are combined together to realize a completely different practical experience through materials. this space of stone and lotus not only expresses the characteristics of materials, but also contains the functions of traditional chinese study, connecting the material and spiritual world from the east and the west with a ritual experience.

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green round window

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the name of zhai in traditional chinese calligraphy



project info:


name: the space of stone and lotous
architecture office: minax
location: shanghai china
area: 94sqm



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edited by: myrto katsikopoulou | designboom