studio 10 renews old electronics factory with a nostalgic appreciation for undervalued design

studio 10 renews old electronics factory with a nostalgic appreciation for undervalued design

in shenzhen, china, studio 10 has breathed new life into an abandoned factory, transforming it into an exhibition hall with educational amenities. as a venue for the 2017 bi-city biennale of urbanism \ architecture — an event co-organized by the two neighboring cities of shenzhen and hong kong — the destination serves as an example of adaptive reuse in a city where many buildings are deserted or derelict.

the factory has been assigned with new programs



the building contained several elements familiar with factories in urban chinese villages, with deteriorated exteriors of mosaic walls, broken wall-mounted factory lamps, steel doors and smaller surrounding structures enclosed with corrugated metal panels. when undergoing renovations, these elements — all specific to the building’s time and typology — are often seen to be cheap, temporary and dated, and the first to be gotten rid of. however, in an attempt to re-evaluate this approach, studio 10 honored them as key components of the overall redesign.

the building is almost a paradigm of typical factories in urban villages



the project takes the factory renovation as a case study: by adopting an ‘inlay’ strategy and approach, that involves recording, extracting and reconstructing, before restoring and recycling. as a result, it aims to bring out both the contemporary and nostalgic sides of these materials and components while providing practical architectural solution for the exhibition venue and future school.

the project takes the factory renovation as a case study



boxes made of corrugated metal panels with roll-up doors operate independently, allowing the space to be open to the public 24 hours a day. these contain restrooms, food and beverage options, and an information kiosk. the boxes highlight the spacious interior with turquoise accents, complementing the contemporary mosaics which establish a connection between the interior and the exterior.

at the center, a central passage way opens up to the community



studio 10 further explored strategies to restore the most commonly-seen damaged aspects of the area by improving the region’s mosaic walls. by filling where the mosaic is missing with colored putty the studio transformed them into unique mosaic murals. additionally, terrazzo panels made from mosaic pieces fallen from the exterior walls were used extensively throughout the project.

the scheme also accommodates public amenity programs such as restrooms and an information kiosk

the renovated interior

part of the exhibition

view to the exhibition

view to the factory from outside


the mosaic walls

axonometric drawing of the project


project info:


gfa: 2,000 sqm
photography: chao zhang, wei chen, shuyi terrazzo factory, ningbo, studio 10
curator: future+ academy
exhibition period: 12/21/2017-02/04/2018
location: shangwei village, zhangkengjing, guanhu, longhua district, shenzhen


about the UABB

designboom is main international media partner of the UABB, the seventh bi-city biennale of urbanism\architecture in shenzhen.

UABB is the only exhibition in the world to explore issues of urbanization, and this year’s edition of is jointly curated by hou hanrou (artistic directore of the MAXXI in rome) and founding partners of architecture studio URBANUS, liu xiaodu and meng yan. under the theme of ‘cities, grow in difference’, three sections are presented:
the two sections of urbanism, namely  – ‘global south’ (liu xiaodu) and – ‘urban village’ (meng yan) are co-curated by zhu ye,
the – ‘art making city’ section (hou hanrou) is co-curated by yang yong.

urban villages and globally distinctive alternative practices are in juxtaposition with the interaction between the urban, architecture, art and culture for research and discussion and UABB’s highlights are the site-specificic installations.
different from other biennales in the world, as a site, the UABB is witness to the most drastic urbanization of the 20th and 21st centuries. as the outcome of collision and fusion between rapid urbanization and the urban-rural dual structure in the planned economic period, urban villages have been preserved as a highly potent urban laboratory and base for breeding alternative lifestyles, where newcomers start to settle in the city. the curatorial team wants to redefine the experience for visitors, in view of the special environment of the urban village — a more diversified, open-minded understanding and imagination on urban living and evolutionary patterns, thus to critically think about the value of urban life.

UABB’s main venue is nantou old town, shenzhen, china, with sub-venues set up in other urban villages around shenzhen.
december 15, 2017 – march 15, 2018


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: maria erman | designboom

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