undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation

CSWADI renovates and expands Relic Museum in China

 

China Southwest Architecture Design (CSWADI) has completed the renovation and expansion of the Sanxingdui relic site museum park in Guanghan, China. The new building is situated north of the central axis of the park, near the river embankment, designed as three undulating mounds inspired by the landscape and historical ruins of the ancient Shu Kingdom. Low-iron glass and bronze sun visors on the facade simulate the eyes of excavated relics, connecting the museum to Sanxingdui’s bronze civilization and offering views of the verdant surroundings.

 

To accommodate the increasing number of visitors and newly discovered artifacts, the new museum and visitor center now covers an area of 54,400 sqm, replacing the original buildings that are no longer sufficient. The design includes re-planning the entire park and creating a cohesive visitor experience with a counterclockwise loop that links the new and the two old museums, the altar, and other key sites.

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
all images by Arch-Exist photography and Sensory Design Wang Ting

 

 

sanxingdui museum features the formation of three mounds

 

The Sanxingdui site, located near the Yazi River, is an important archaeological location that has uncovered significant relics from a civilization dating back 4,800 years. CSWADI incorporates elements from the existing buildings, such as a spiral exterior wall, to guide the formation of the three mound-shaped structures. This reflects the ‘three stars with the moon’ concept, linking the new structure with the site’s historical context. The geometric surfaces of the mounds draw from the old Museum No. 2, a historical landmark by the senior architect Zheng Guoying. The roof of these mounds is covered with sloping soil, blending into the river embankment and echoing the slope of the old Museum No. 1. The Chinese architectural practice creates a compact building that integrates the new museum and visitor center into a unified entity. The layout arranges the visitor center, exhibition areas, and logistics sequentially from east to west, enhancing the park’s functional organization and visitor flow.

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
a counterclockwise loop connects the new museum, the two old museums, the altar, and other key sites.

 

 

the eyes of the bronze mask inspire multiple aspects of the design 

 

The concept draws inspiration from the expressive eyes of the iconic bronze mask found at Sanxingdui, shaping its massing and serving as a dialogue between its internal space and the external ruins. Visitors enter through a narrow gap in the closed outer wall, beginning a journey through the cave-like interior. The interior spaces, symbolized by the Eyes are significant nodes within the museum, including a central space-time spiral atrium and a descending ramp leading to a circular pit below ground level. The museum’s design creates an Eye of the Earth establishing a connection between the sky and the earth. The open theater on the second floor, positioned towards the old museum and ruins area, offers a dynamic space for performances and exhibitions. From the theater’s ‘eyes’ visitors can view the old museum and surrounding forest. The facade also serves the Eye theme with its openings and features unique materials such as ‘chrysanthemum yellow’ granite and hand-chiseled stone slabs, adopting the earth’s colors, and textures. 

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
low-iron glass and bronze sun visors on the facade simulate the eyes of excavated relics

 

 

exhibition narrative unfolds in a continuous movie-like sequence

 

The new museum consists of two above-ground floors and two underground temporary exhibition halls, totaling 20,000 sqm of exhibition space. The exhibition halls are designed for flexibility, with a continuous sequence reflecting the archaeological narrative of Sanxingdui. The museum’s roof features a steel grid structure with strategically positioned equipment pipelines to integrate equipment and structure. 

 

Unlike typical museums, Sanxingdui Museum’s exhibition layout follows an archaeological narrative, with large halls in a sequence, following the archaeological narrative. The exhibition halls employ a broken-line series design for flexibility, allowing parallel door openings. Visitors can explore exhibits independently or in a one-way circulation, with strategically placed facilities like cafes and rest areas to alleviate fatigue. A special highlight is the cultural relic exhibition hall on the second floor, offering panoramic river views while exploring the museum’s cultural exhibits. 

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
unique materials such as ‘chrysanthemum yellow’ granite and hand-chiseled stone slabs adorn the facade

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
a descending ramp leads to a circular pit below ground level

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
strategically placed facilities like cafes and rest areas alleviate fatigue

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
from the theater’s ‘eyes’ visitors can view the old museum and surrounding forest.

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
the interior spaces, symbolized by the Eyes are significant nodes within the museum

sanxingdui-museum-renovation-chinese-eyes-facade-designboom-1800-03

the layout integrates the new museum and visitor center into a unified entity

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
visitors enter through a narrow gap in the closed outer wall, beginning a journey through the cave-like interior

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
the expressive eyes of the iconic bronze mask found at Sanxingdui inspire the concept

undulating facade simulates eyes of chinese relics in sanxingdui museum renovation
the new building is designed as three undulating mounds

sanxingdui-museum-renovation-chinese-eyes-facade-designboom-1800-02

CSWADI incorporates elements from the existing buildings into the renovation

 

 

 

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the old and the new museum
the old and the new museum
the Sanxingdui site is located near the Yazi River
the Sanxingdui site is located near the Yazi River
elements from the existing buildings guide the formation of the three mound-shaped structures
elements from the existing buildings guide the formation of the three mound-shaped structures
sloping soil covers the roofs of the mounds and blends into the river embankment
sloping soil covers the roofs of the mounds and blends into the river embankment
site plan by CSWADI
site plan by CSWADI
basement floor plan by CSWADI
basement floor plan by CSWADI
first floor plan by CSWADI
first floor plan by CSWADI
second floor plan by CSWADI
second floor plan by CSWADI
stone unit diagram by CSWADI
stone unit diagram by CSWADI
section by CSWADI
section by CSWADI
section by CSWADI
section by CSWADI

project info:

 

name: The Design of the New Sanxingdui Museum
architect: China Southwest Architecture Design and Research Institute Co., Ltd.
location: Guanghan, Sichuan, China
lead architect: Liu Yi
project architects: Xiao Bo, Yang Yang
project manager: Luo Dian
architects: Yang Pengcheng, Sha Peng, Wan Yaling, Xin Zhen, Liu Yu, Choi Tsingfei, Ding Hongya, Chen Shuo, Huang Xiangyu, Qiu Yanquan, Li Mu, Qiao Cong
structural Design: Long Weiguo, Yang Wen, Lai Chenggang, Lan Tianqing, Zhu Siqi, Liu Xiaozhou, Xiao Kejian, Wang Pan, Wen Jian Plumbing Design: Yang Jiuzhou, Liu Shuai, Li Bo, Chen Yao, Zhao Xuanqi, Tan Gujin, Gu Xingyu
HVAC design: Yang Ling, Wei Minghua, Wen Ling, He Sihao, Fang Xin Electrical Design: Li Hui, Xu Jianbing, Ao Faxing, Qiu Yu, Li Lu, Liu Chong, Xie Songlin
curtain wall design: Dong Biao, Zhang Guoqing, Chen Zhaohuan, Wang Yiwei, Fu Xiaohui, Luo Xin
building energy conservation: Feng Ya, Zhong Huizhi, Dou Mei
building intelligence: Wu Huan, Bu Xiangyu, Yu Qiang, Liang Jun, Wang Shaowei
interior design: Zhang Can, Li Wenting, Lai Wei, Yang Jing, Dong Wenjie, Jiang Pengchong, Liu Wenjing, Tang Jun, Fan Jinli, Yang Yan, Wang Zhangping, Li Guangchao, Tang Jia, Xu Maoya
landscape design: Chen Hongyu, Yan Bin, Huang Hao, Wang Zhihao, Li Gang, Fan Xiaoqian
outdoor lighting design: Xu Dongliang, Zhang Guoqiang, Wang Shanxin, Yuan Li, Xia Hui
interior lighting design: Hu Fang, Li Yahui, Ma Zanbao, Zhao Xian, Zhang Quanliang, Xiang Jun Cost: Zhang Tingxue, Yuan Jie, Peng Xiaofang, Jia Lingli, Yu Jie, Liu Mingyu, Jiang Jinhong, Yang Jiayi, Wei Youren
client: Sanxingdui Museum
area: 54400 sqm
construction: China Construction Eighth Engineering Division.Corp.Ltd Southwest Branch
photographer: Arch-Exist photography | @archexist and Sensory Design Wang Ting

 

 

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: thomai tsimpou | designboom

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