vector architects sculpts 'chapel of music' as minimalistic music box in hebei

vector architects sculpts 'chapel of music' as minimalistic music box in hebei

the building as a musical instrument

 

Vector Architects unveils its newly completed Chapel of Music to redefine communal spaces in Hebei, China. It is the fourth addition to the studio’s portfolio within the Aranya Qinhuangdao community — unlike its predecessors, which all occupy direct seafront locations, this theater finds its place at the heart of the community plaza, known as Youyi Bay. Situated slightly north of the plaza’s center, it is flanked by a canteen and market to the north, residential apartments to the west, and hotels and shops to the south. The architecture takes shape with a structure of austere concrete, which is expressed along its interiors to sculpt a serene atmosphere.

vector architects chapel musicimage © Su Shengliang | banner image © Chen Hao / Vector Architects

 

 

vector architects’ transforming theater

 

Vector Architects designs its Chapel of Music as a large-scale musical instrument that has been dropped onto the plaza, where the orchestration of sound, light, and air lends a new kind of music hall. The architects‘ design process begins in section, with the Meditation Rotunda on the lower level and the Skylight Music Hall above it. The Music Hall features a sunken stage at its center, which resembles a suspended disc when viewed from the Meditation Rotunda. Forty-eight spectators can be accommodated on two levels of seating surrounding the stage. As performances unfold, sound fills the hall and travels down to the rotunda through nine brass sound transmission tubes. A large retractable circular pneumatic roof crowns the Music Hall, introducing natural skylight. When the weather is nice, this roof ascends to transform the Music Hall into an open-air theater.

vector architects chapel musicimage © Arch-Exist / Vector Architects

 

 

inside the chapel of music

 

Vector Architects’ Chapel of Music hosts a Meditation Rotunda along its lower floor, which rises to a height of nine meters. Operable glass panels with a fifty-centimeter-wide gap at the corner of the walls allow natural light to gently diffuse into the space, creating an atmosphere that complements the suspended stage’s upper gaps. Polished concrete seating along the wall provides a lounge chair-like experience, allowing visitors to recline naturally and immerse themselves in the music, natural light, and the breeze. Meanwhile, the Chapel incorporates a large picture window on the eastern facade, offering concertgoers a framed glimpse of the sea horizon as they exit after the performance.

vector architects chapel music
image © Arch-Exist / Vector Architects

 

 

As the community’s centerpiece, the Chapel features three distinct building facets that respond to the flows of people entering the plaza and the sea. The chapel’s three concave curves on its outer walls harmoniously coexist with adjacent buildings on the plaza, creating a variety of public spaces with diverse atmospheres and scales. Elevating the building from the ground maintains the plaza’s open character while providing a sheltered space for rest. The entrance lobby, located on the raised first floor, is accessible via a long ramp slightly offset and parallel to the building’s curving east wall. This design element engages with the canteen and market on the northern side, inviting people and guiding them into the chapel to embark on a journey of music and space.

vector architects chapel music
image © Arch-Exist / Vector Architects vector architects sculpts 'chapel of music' as minimalistic music box in hebei
image © Arch-Exist / Vector Architects

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image © Chen Hao / Vector Architects

vector architects sculpts 'chapel of music' as minimalistic music box in hebeiimage © Chen Hao / Vector Architects

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image © Arch-Exist / Vector Architects

 

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image © Chen Hao / Vector Architects
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image © Su Shengliang / Vector Architects
image © Su Shengliang / Vector Architects
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project info:

 

project title: Chapel of Music

architecture, interiors: Vector Architects | @vectorarchitects

location: Beidaihe New District, Qinhuangdao, Hebei, China

floor area: 455 square meters

footprint area: 261 square meters 

completion: September 2023

photography: © Su Shengliang, Arch-Exist, Chen Hao / Vector Architects

 

principal architect: Dong Gong

project architects: Zhao Liangliang, Liu Shida

design management: Zhang Han, Li Jinteng

site architects: Zeng Zihao, Tan Yeqian

project team: Zeng Zihao, Li Mofei, Zhang Liwen 

structural design: Ma Zhigang, Zhang SuiPing, Zhang Lei

MEP design: Qi Xudong, Zhang Fujun, Wang Yafeng, Liu Xiaojie, Yu Weipeng

LDI: Dalian Architectural Design & Research Institute Co.,Ltd

LDI project architect: Lin Chuanyu

LDI architect: Jiang Yue

lighting consultant: TORYO International Lighting Design (Beijing) Center Co., Ltd.

acoustic consultant: JH Theatre Architecture Design Consulting Company 

signage designer: Beijing SEED Cultural Media Co., Ltd.

client: Aranya · Qinhuangdao

construction contractor: Jiangsu Jiangdu Construction Group Co., Ltd.  

structure system: Shear Wall Structure

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