Gathering is the beginning of all civilized behaviors, and people’s gathering leads to the emergence of food, history and emotions. In Fuzhou, known as the “Rongcheng”, people used to gather under trees and talking about various things and a village culture emerged along with nature.
Waterfrom Design has completed a sales and reception center in collaboration with IF Design in Fuzhou. Named Fuzhou Vanke Golden Field of International Reception Center, it covers a total of 1,600-square-metre, includes reception area, negotiation area, gallery, reading area, dining area, kitchen, bar, show flat, etc.
All contains deep emotions showing that it is difficult for urban life to take root. Waterfrom Design, taking “gathering” as the main conceptual axis, created a social field that plays a role in the emotional attachment of contemporary life. Here, people can stay naturally, gather and interact. Just slowing down and enjoying life; approaching the past of the culture and moving towards its future.
As the No. 2 building will be used as the public library of Fuzhou and for the community’s cultural activities in the future, it must be considered to have a function of storing a variety of books. However, unlike the traditional libraries, the bookcases are regarded as houses in the village that have fences, paths, courtyards of communities, and squares that are convenient for gatherings and events.
A coffee shop with a bar counter allow people to enjoy even alone, drinking coffee and reading to interpret their leisurely attitudes the space claims, which links the interior with the street activities. Behind the seats of the counter, a layer of books and a layer of greenery are interspersed into a miniature forest with a faint barrier. When people step into it, the scene like an indoor garden comes into view, breaking the stereotyped image of sales office or library.
The amber-red corner on the right of the entrance is another eye-catching space impression. Different from a lot of warm gray and off-white neutral silent tone in the room, the reception area is made of fine bamboo slices to create such graceful colors and strengthen the dramatic tension.
The art works spliced with the house numbers of numerous streets in Fuzhou make the people in the space seem to linger in miniature Fuzhou. The three lanes and seven alleys of Fuzhou, the old-fashioned scenes of Fuzhou in ancient times, the refined historical context, have created a real experience and feeling through integration and innovation, resulting in a close aesthetic connection, so as to achieve a harmonious overall space expression, and bring a feeling of satisfaction to the people in both visuality and mentality.
The second floor is the main book display area. The bookshelf becomes the main body of a large number of construction space shapes. The library’s basic functions of collecting books, displaying and providing seats for reading are mixed and matched into bookshelf-shaped components: the bookshelf with real and virtual shapes can be used to store books, and you can also find openings to sit and read. The bookcases connected in series with revolving lines naturally form framed scenery. In the set openings, you can see people walking, looking for books, reading with their heads down, and the postures of plant growth, which makes a scene of activity. More interestingly, books concentrated in specific areas according to thematic attributes form a semi-independent exclusive space with seats to attract like-minded people to gather.
The central axis of the space, a relatively wide-open rest area surrounded by bookshelves is the square in the village that can be used as a cultural lecture hall for convening activities, eating and chatting, facilitating more interactive behaviors.
"Art craft of Banyan City (Fuzhou) is renowned around, wood painting, stone carving and lacquer painting are among the best ones; the artworks will continue its flourish in a new century, the local people will be delighted by their vigorous life." The Fuzhou lacquerware, Shoushan stone carving and cork painting mentioned in Mr. Deng Tuo's poem are known as the "three unique arts of Banyan City (Fuzhou)". In the whole space, more modern methods are adopted to take the shape and space of lacquerware and form a certain visual impact through large-area display. By integrating the local Fuzhou culture, from the historical context, to the cultural and historical heritage, to the inheritance of craftsman, with bamboo culture as the element, recall the concepts of "workmanship" and "handcraft" to our lives, "spirit of craftsman" is a kind of esteem for life and attitude towards life. The urban cultural elements with unique features can be used as cultural landmarks bearing history and memory to demonstrate the destiny and pulse of the city.
Photo: Kuomin Lee, Qilin Zhang