Located by the fifth ring of Beijing, TEMP’s latest project is an art center that will host exhibitions, meetings, and events. The area has transformed itself from a rural setting few years ago into a new arts and finance district. A few artists and museums have moved in, as does the local developer, who has occupied the site starting the business within a preliminary structure. As the development gained more propulsion, new programs needed to be fulfilled.
▼项目外观，external view of the project ©Weiqi Ji
A gallery surrounded by gardens
TEMP takes advantage of its underused areas and elevates the compound into an oasis that draws the mind to contemplation and mystery. The new Center has only one floor, consisting of outdoor courtyards, a gallery hall, and offices. Interlocking yards now wrap around a revamped gallery, which is accessible from all gardens. As the allure of the different artworks in the gallery, the pluralism of aesthetic ideals is reflected in various stylized courtyards, framing the interior and the outer world. Each of them embodies a slightly varying philosophy, from brightness to lushness, austerity to wildness.
▼不同的花园，various gardens ©TEMP
The pluralistic landscape
A volumetric tension establishes a focal point at the street entrance, with its large almond-shaped rock stands upright, touching the roof. Behind it, raised wooden corridor lays out an inviting and ritualistic walkway. A few small maples and limestone sit quietly on the pebbles and stepping stones; the latter aligns with a serpent-like wall that slithers around the courtyard, creating multiple layers of space.
▼入口空间，设有一块巨石，entrance space with a large rock standing upright ©Weiqi Ji
▼入口后的石花园，stone garden behind the entrance ©Weiqi Ji
▼弯曲的墙壁和石板道路，curved walls and stone steps ©Weiqi Ji
▼步道穿过多层墙面，pathway through layers of walls ©Weiqi Ji
▼墙面围合的空间与石块，space enclosed by curved walls with a limestone ©Weiqi Ji
Another maple tree and a stone are fixed in a reflecting pool on the other side of the compound. Warm lights, water reflections, and openings at the foot and eye levels strike a chord of harmony on this quiet corner.
▼反射水池，reflecting pool ©Weiqi Ji
openings on the walls corresponding with the landscape ©Weiqi Ji
While the minimalism of trees and stones mark the restrained and uncluttered courtyards, abundance mark the lush and mysterious ones. An open field of foxtail wavers wildly with the wind, while another of bamboo and mirrors reflecting auditory and visual notes as one passes through.
view to the foxtail garden from the stone garden ©Weiqi Ji
▼狐尾草园，foxtail garden ©Weiqi Ji
▼从狐尾草园看向展厅和石园，view to the gallery hall and the stone garden from the foxtail garden ©Weiqi Ji
▼竹/镜园，bamboo/mirror garden ©Weiqi Ji
Frames outside artworks
As Chinese gardens heavily play on intentional framing throughout the sequential experience of space, the Center also cut through different partitions mischievously and generously. It leaves room for mystery, artfully hidden as much as what is on display.
▼砖花园，brick garden ©Weiqi Ji
view to the gallery through the brick garden ©Weiqi Ji
▼各式框景，various frames of the landscape ©Weiqi Ji
In the main gallery hall, privacy is ensured by ordered lines of white walls. Each area comes with artworks that soothe, inspire and provoke. They and the people in the room reveal bits of themselves through the cutouts of different heights and sizes.
▼展厅，gallery hall ©Weiqi Ji
▼透过开洞看向不同空间，view to different spaces through the openings ©Weiqi Ji
▼多层墙面框定的走廊，layers of walls framing the corridor ©Weiqi Ji
▼透过开洞欣赏画作，enjoy the artworks through openings ©Weiqi Ji
Ample lights are filtered in and out through large windows. From the gallery, it offers an escape to the picturesque natural world. Whereas from the garden, the dynamics of people, and the warmth of artificial lights at dawn gives away an inviting worldlines.
▼休息区，lounge ©Weiqi Ji
▼透过巨大的窗户欣赏花园景观，enjoy the gardens through large windows ©Weiqi Ji
▼会议室，meeting room ©Weiqi Ji
▼冥想空间，space for contemplation ©Weiqi Ji
A person sitting at a meeting room exchanging looks with another sitting on the elevated courtyard, either be the spectator or the actor. This play of spectatorship adds layers to the spatial dynamics, extending art to reality and intensifying their overlaps of enigma and solace.
Client: Beijing Art & Finance International Innovation Park
Location: Beijing, China
Area: 2285 sqm
Commission: Adaptive Reuse / Landscape / Interior Design
Principal: Howard Jiho Kim
Team: Zirui Chen, Francesca Tongxin Guan, Yaodong Ding, Zhenkun Cai, Xiaojing Guo
Photos: Weiqi Ji