Excerpt: “Woyun Platform” is a public building integrating cultural display, science education, cultural creation experience and scene experience. The building has three floors, the ground floor is suspended to form a completely open multi-functional public space, the middle and top are cultural display and leisure experience space, where there are mountains and water above the clouds, and passion for life under the clouds.
[Text as submitted by architect] The Longmen Mountain Range, which straddles between the Chengdu Plain and the Western Sichuan Plateau, creates two very different worlds. Pengzhou, 50 kilometers north of Chengdu, is blessed with superior landscape nature such as the majestic Longmen Mountain Range and the flowing Jianjiang River, etc. In March 2020, Pengzhou government started the preparation of the Master Plan for the Construction of Pengzhou City, in an attempt to shape a three-dimensional landscape painting park city scenario of “city in the landscape, people in the park”.
Located at the bridgehead of Xiaoyudong Bridge in Longmenshan Town, “Woyun Platform” is a must-see place for entering and leaving Longmenshan Town, and an important node for the revitalization of the countryside in Longmenshan Town. We hope that “Woyun Platform” will be placed in town in a unique and light architectural form, take root here, and bring vitality and vigor to the town.
“Woyun Platform” is a public building integrating cultural display, science education, cultural creation experience and scene experience. The building has three floors, the ground floor is suspended to form a completely open multi-functional public space, the middle and top are cultural display and leisure experience space, where there are mountains and water above the clouds, and passion for life under the clouds.
Architecture is natural, living, historical and future. Only by integrating into the natural environment, witnessing life, bearing history and culture, and thinking about future development, can architecture take root and sprout on the land it is located in.
The sociologist Fei Xiaotong once suggested that “man has a root, and the individual is just a branch growing from the root. This root is the society that supplies him with the materials for growth and education and culture: a small family and a village, a large village and a country.”
Back to the design concept of Archermit, we hope that the architecture can take root in the land where it is located, and this requires the architecture to participate in the life of the local people and have more connections with the local community.
During the initial design visits, we were concerned about a problem shared by four villages within 1.5 kilometers of the site: Dawan, Taizi, Yudong, and Dongping, which is also an important problem facing urbanization in China and around the world-The decline and disappearance of the traditional social order in the villages.
In retrospect, the relationship between urban and rural areas is not dichotomous, but interdependent. Urban-rural integration does not mean a one-way flow convergence of the countryside to the city, but an equal exchange dialogue and interchange between urban and rural areas. We hope that on the basis of meeting the basic functions and needs, “Woyun Platform” can give back to the surrounding villagers, give them a venue to gather, gossip and play, convey the meaning of public buildings more, carry more social values, and become a place of dialogue and communication between village and village, city and countryside, so that “Woyun Platform” can take root in Longmenshan Town and bring more vitality and vigor. With such thinking, we put forward the concept of “Village Parlor”.
The white “bamboo forest” grows from the ground to the dome, and the regular structural column network is hidden in the “bamboo forest”, forming an open and inclusive multifunctional place. It is like the clouds formed by the evaporation of the water of the Jianjiang River, bringing a shade in the hot summer, and the people under the clouds, sitting and cooling off. It is like the “gathering place under the big banyan tree” in local memory, where people under the tree slowly shake the fan and tell stories. It is like a space saucer flying to the unknown stars, where people under the dome look up to the stars and long for the future.
We hope that the white “bamboo forest” will become the “root” of the building, and the people gathered here will become the “root” of the building, injecting the most local flavor of life, and forming a small world of shared community culture, achieving the ideal situation of modern interpretation of traditional life forms. Their interaction here connects the past, present and future.
When the surrounding villagers have a good place for gossip and recreation, how to meet the visual and spiritual needs of people? In this regard, we have conducted an exploratory and innovative practice.
At night, the huge dome at the bottom of the overhead turns into a poetic star universe through lighting design. We split the huge dome into more than 2,600 single curved aluminum panels through parametric design, which facilitates installation and effectively controls the cost of the dome. The holes of different sizes on the panels are randomly distributed by three specifications of 12mm, 25mm and 40mm in diameter through parametric control, and the holes of each panel are arranged differently to ensure that the holes of the whole dome show a natural and random distribution.
For the built-in lighting of the dome cavity, we abandoned the costly and complicated construction process of LED custom bulb hanging method and chose to set LED spotlight side wash at key nodes to control the beam angle, so that the light forms light reflection on the side wall of the perforated plate hole and finally forms a realistic and vast starry sky imagery on the outside of the aluminum plate. And through the dynamic meteor at the main entrance, the contrast between the stars and the starry sky at the sunken square, the contrast between visible and hidden, inside and outside, strengthens the dreamlike spatial mood of the whole bottom space at night.
Whether it is a sunny or cloudy day, we have preserved a “starry sky” for Longmenshan Town. Under this soothing “starry sky”, “Woyun Platform” becomes a theater of another kind of life. Different kinds of exhibitions and events (art exhibitions, outdoor concerts, fairs, etc.) can be held here. Perhaps there will be villagers nearby to cool off, tourists passing by to take photos, couples on romantic dates, children counting “stars”, and people with a lot on their mind to dwell and think …… expecting more people to enjoy themselves here. The ideal of “beauty and beauty together, the world is one” is sprouting and growing here.
In the landscape
The site is located between the magnificent landscape of Longmen Mountain, we took the nature of Longmen Mountain as the inspiration for the design and came up with the architectural image of “Reclining Cloud”. “Reclining clouds” means lying high in the cloud and mist, and means “returning to seclusion”. “Woyun Platform” expresses Archermit thoughts and explorations on “people’s inner longing to return to nature, nature and tradition”.
The design of “Woyun Platform” extracts the geological relics of Longmen Mountain National Geopark, the nature of panda to play in the trees, the local form of panda and the bamboo forest where panda live as architectural elements to create a magical, open and interesting experience place, and construct a mysterious environment of “hermits exploring”.
We transplanted natural elements such as stones and alpine bamboos directly into the space, and designed a water circulation landscape based on the mountain-water system in the valley of the Jianjiang River. The water surface on the roof resembles a lake in the mountains, forming a waterfall that falls down along the valley and winds through the secret bamboo forest at the bottom.
The white pillars on the ground floor grow upward like a bamboo forest, and the central building takes the image of a panda hanging on the top of the bamboo forest to build a suspended hemisphere. The shallow water on the roof is scattered with two “floating stones” of different sizes, the meaning of “floating stones” is derived from the boulders of Feilai Peak formed by the geological activity of “glacial drifting gravel” in Longmen Mountain and the river floating stones in the valley of the Jianjiang River. The panda’s partial form and black and white colors become the panda-themed elements of the interior space, furniture.
In the picture
Following the long staircase towards the star in the clouds, the picture scroll of the mountain and water secret tour unfolds here. The vertical light pipe facing the reception hall is a continuation of the bamboo forest at the bottom, and the winding light film at the top, the ink art floor paint flowing on the ground, and the water rippling lights in the room are also echoes of the water scene at the bottom.
A deep and quiet alley is connected to the reception hall, and the black texture display wall sequentially shows the diverse natural elements from the ground to the sky of the Jianjiang river valley: rock formations, soil, moss, shrubs, trees, flowers, fruits, animals … Sunlight passes through the skylight to spill the watery light and shadow of the roof in the alley.
Continuing deeper is the second world of light and shadow. Fine metal tubes and metal discs build a mysterious bamboo forest secret world, the colorful natural light and shadow of the river valley is projected in the secret world, and the space wrapped by the water ripple stainless steel plate is reflected in every corner of the corridor, making the corridor more mysterious and fantastic. Strolling in between, the river valley in the light of the strange, insects and birds linger around.
After viewing the film in the Panda Wildlife Science Hall, we walk through the ink corridor and cross the water to reach the panda ecology exhibition hall, which is surrounded by water on three sides. The water curtain falling from the roof brings a flowing visual and auditory experience to the frozen space. The sparse “bamboo bushes” in the rest area create a psychologically intimate space, and are also a narrative expression of the “bamboo forest” imagery in which pandas live.
From the revolving staircase to the third floor, the full floor-to-ceiling glass brings good light and a transparent view. The “bamboo clump” running through the space, the winding light film and the crystal clear glass brick wall reappear in the view, ensuring a coherent architectural narrative while subtly dividing the functional space.
The water surface of the roof wraps around a large area of gray space under the eaves, and the large ring eaves and columns form a picture frame, with the water surface in the near distance reflecting and compressing the distant Longmen Mountain into the same picture, just like a long scroll of landscape across the eyes.
The “landscape” in Chinese culture is not just a “landscape”, but the nature on which all things live, and the spiritual home of the literati. How to make the architecture and the surrounding landscape integrate and dialogue, we believe that it is not to transcribe the form of the landscape, but to give the local people, who “live by the mountain and eat by the water”, a place to carry their emotions, and to build the spirit of place consistent with the local landscape. In addition to maintaining the natural landscape of the area, we hope that through this architectural practice, we can bring in some new “culture” to the area, create a more poetic spiritual place, make the land more fertile, and make the life here more desirable to more people.