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MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth

‘timeless beacon’ brings a sense of rebirth to Taiping market 

 

Lightly enveloping and cladding the abandoned Taiping market building in Guangdong, China, ‘Timeless Beacon’ by MAD Architects emerges as a symbol of rebirth for a once bustling commercial hub. The practice’s lead architect Ma Yansong was invited by the Guangdong Nanhai Art Field to complete the ethereal and colorful art installation,  currently on show at Taiping Xu Art Zone until the Summer of 2024.

 

Taiping Market is the largest abandoned building in Taiping Xu, a once popular fair established during the late Ming Dynasty. It kept flourishing for centuries until the 1980s, when fishermen, businessmen, and villagers gathered there for trading. But the modern-day urbanization boom changed everything, pushing young people to seek opportunities outside the Chinese village. Even more, the rise of the internet era has overshadowed the need for physical markets, leading to a slow abandonment of the formerly buzzing fair. 

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
all images courtesy MAD Architects | full header video © MAD Architects, produced by STUDIO FANG

 

 

forming a surreal scenery bridging past, present, & future 

 

On the side of Taiping’s deserted streets, concrete houses occasionally interspersed with old brick buildings emerge. There, a couple of elderly residents sit at their doorsteps and chat, painting a picture of a prosperous era that has now gone into decay. With that scenery depicted, the architect reflects on his ‘Timeless Beacon’ installation‘I see many plants grow towards the sun from the gaps of the abandoned building. We hope to create a sense of vitality and rebirth from the ruins, so that people can feel new energy and perception from the old structure and new understanding of time to this whole area.’

 

‘The quiet village contrasts the contemporary backdrop of a fast-growing city across the river. When the function of the place is no longer important, the emotion and inspiration it carries are the value left by the building. MAD intends to parallel the time scales of history and the future through design, forming a surreal scene that brings people back to imagination.’

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
‘Timeless Beacon’ by MAD architects

 

 

In light of Ma Yansong’s vision for the abandoned hub, the resulting installation sees the three-story commercial landmark wrapped in reflective film. This new material blurrily mirrors the surrounding old streets through the building’s façade and inner space, respectively. At the top, a towering multimedia light device is enveloped in colorfully delicate pieces of cloth, fluttering in the wind like ethereal drapes. At night, the rooftop transforms into a sort of ‘lighthouse’ for the quiet village, creating a dreamy aura along the bankside.

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
the art installation will be on show until the summer of 2024

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
view of the towering light device draped in colorful cloth

mad-architects-timeless-beacon-designboom-full

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
close up of the veil fluttering in the wind

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
Ma Yansong was invited by Guangdong Nanhai Art Field to create the installation

MAD architects wraps abandoned chinese landmark in ethereal veil of multicolored cloth
using a reflective skin on the façade of the building

mad-architects-timeless-beacon-designboom-full-2

 

 

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project info:

 

name: Timeless Beacon 

location: Taiping Xu, Nanhai, Guangdong, China,

installation: Ma Yansong – MAD Architects | @madarchitects 

client: Guangdong Nanhai Art Field

videography: STUDIO FANG 

on view unti: Summer 2024 

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