enter projects gives facelift to belgium factory with an intervention of fluid rattan

enter projects gives facelift to belgium factory with an intervention of fluid rattan

introducing fluid nature into an industrial site

 

Thailand-based studio Enter Projects Asia takes to Waregem — an area just outside Brussels, Belgium — to install a ‘factory facelift’ intervention using its signature undulating rattan.

 

The existing mixed-use space covered 300 square-meters, and was in need of an injection of ‘balance and calm.’ With this spirit of wellness, the architects sought to invite nature and creativity into the setting which had been overly industrial. What’s more, the team took cues from the heritage of the site which had served as an ice making factory, noting: ‘the design was to be fluid and liquid, like the properties of pure spring water crystallizing, incorporating raw and sustainable materials wherever possible.

enter projects belgiumimages © Edmund Sumner | @edmundsumner

 

 

from thailand to belgium: a global effort

 

The ‘factory facelift’ was a triumph of remote collaboration between the client in Belgium and Enter Projects Asia (see more here) whose team was scattered nearly worldwide. Relying heavily on Zoom for all client meetings and virtual site visits, the Project Manager operated out of Japan, the designers in Thailand and Australia, and the fabricators in Northern Thailand. The architects comment: ‘The team never met. They remotely made templates, exchanged digital files and ultimately manufactured a series of sculptural elements in natural, sustainable rattan ready for Belgium.

enter projects belgium

 

 

a fluid rattan jigsaw

 

The Belgium factory’s custom rattan forms by Enter Projects take shape according to functionality. Be it lighting, seating, or directional flow, the many elements together culminate in a monumental, sculptural statement piece that rises eight meters (24 feet) and illuminates the lobby.

 

The architects explain the design strategy: ‘As an overseas project, we had to come up with a highly innovative logistics strategy: every segment was then digitally deconstructed , so the shipping containers could be optimally filled. Like a 3D jigsaw, the segments were assembled on site in Belgium — with little to no room for error.’

 

EPA Director, Patrick Keane notes: ‘The detail and precision with which the client approached this task was incredible to witness, even from a distance.’

enter projects belgium

 

 

Keane continues: ‘Working across two continents always has its challenges. But this was on another level, nobody knew each other or exactly what the other was doing. It was a blank sheet of paper so given the result, I believe it’s the biggest and best challenge which often starts from zero.

 

As a byproduct of this project, rattan factories were able to stay afloat during the darkest days: people were struggling to eat, supplies cut and shops closed. This project became a lifeline for many craftsmen who otherwise would have been without work. Maintaining these factories ensured local, sustainable arts & crafts production could continue.’

enter projects belgium
the intervention fluidly meanders from room to room

enter projects belgiumfrom seating to lighting, the sculptural work is informed by its function

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the rattan materials contrasts with the starkness of the existing space

enter projects gives facelift to belgium factory with an intervention of fluid rattanthe project invites natural materials and organic forms into an industrial office setting in belgium

enter-projects-belgium-factory-facelift-designboom-08a

enter projects transforms the atmosphere with ‘balance and calm’

ARCHITECTURE IN BELGIUM (107)

EDMUND SUMNER (15)

ENTER PROJECTS (8)

WHERE PEOPLE WORK (695)

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