URBANUS Architecture & Design / Yan MENG - OCAT-B10, an open-air art gallery
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OCAT-B10, an open-air art gallery

URBANUS Architecture & Design / Yan MENG

Culture  /  Completed
URBANUS Architecture & Design / Yan MENG

B10 was originally a two-story factory building constructed in the early 1990s for disk production. It has now been transformed into a new gallery in the OCT Creative Culture Park, known as OCT Contemporary Art Terminal. The renovated facility encompasses functions such as exhibition, event, a library, a café & art shop, offices, and storage. The design aims to translate the spatial logic and vocabulary of industrial architecture into a contemporary art gallery, showcasing an abstract expression that harmoniously unifies the industrial ambiance with artistic elements.

The design aims to transform the roof of the original two-story factory building into an "open-air art gallery" without violating planning restrictions while increasing exhibition space. The original plan was to have a large exhibition hall with skylights on a single floor. However, to avoid planning approval difficulties, the roof was removed while the layout of the exhibition hall was maintained as it was. The surrounding walls were enclosed with a double-layer stretched metal mesh at the original height of 6 meters. The transparency of the materials blurs the boundaries between the interior and exterior, allowing the architectural space to blend with the surrounding environment. It becomes a series of outdoor exhibition halls with great potential.

By preserving the existing volume, main structure, and exterior walls of the building, we can effectively maximize the utilization of space in this factory building. The entire area of the two-story building is dedicated to exhibitions and activities. Creatively designed as an open-air exhibition area, the roof becomes a dynamic feature. Stairs and movable exhibition walls are incorporated to create a flexible circulation path, providing the art gallery with maximum functionality in its layout. The entire building is painted white, and the facade windows are transformed into recessed blind windows. This approach conceals tangible traces of the past beneath an abstract white surface, turning the building into a contemporary art container.

The new OCT Contemporary Art Centre B10, referred to as OCAT-B10, is originally a two-story factory building for disk production. The design retains the building's original volume and primary structure, with the middle section removed and a new space, the central column-free gallery, inserted through the top and bottom. The L-shaped main staircase in the center and the revolving staircases on the north and south guide the visitor through the exhibition.

The ground floor houses the main exhibition hall and a separate café with an art shop. The second floor is primarily dedicated to exhibitions, education, and the library. The third floor serves as an "open-air art gallery".

The design draws inspiration from the industrial vocabulary of the original building. The white facade incorporates circular motifs of different sizes, both inside and outside the square building volume. The main entrances on the south and west sides feature ceremonial circular spaces. The decorative elements of the original factory building on the north façade are also preserved, thus becoming a symbol of temporal memory.

The material strategy of the building also reflects an abstract expression of the unity between industrialization and artistry. The upper part is an 'open-air gallery' covered by a metal double stretch mesh, while the lower part is a modernist 'white box' with curved walls and openings to suggest the logic of the interior space.

The design achieves high-quality exhibition spaces at a low cost. Its adaptable design enables diverse exhibitions and events. The open-air gallery creates a unique setting for art to interact with the surroundings, offering site-specific installations and performances. A captivating feature that makes it a remarkable destination for art lovers.


 Shenzhen OCT Properties Co., Ltd.
 Museum, Exhibition, Education, Forum, Library, Performance, Bar - Café
 6109 mq
 Meng Yan / URBANUS
 Project Architect: Rao Enchen; Technical Director: Yao Xiaowei; Project Manager: Zhang Yingyuan, Zhang Jiajia (Architecture) Wei Zhijiao, Zhang Xuejuan (Landscape); Team: Jiang Qingzhou, Chen Shuangyuan, Li Yaozong, Liu Yu, Chen Hui, Liu Kan (Architecture) | Li Guanda, Wang Ziyu, Yin Shuyu (Landscape) | Zhou Yu (Internship); Concept Design: Travis Bunt, Jessica Cheung, Bernat Riera, Zhong Haohong, Matt Eshleman, Hu Runze, Mark Leong, Jason Wong, Francis Yuen; Previous Research: Jessica Cheung, Wendy Wu, Xu Yijing
 Collaborators: (LDI) Structure/ MEP (Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing): Tongji Architects; Interior Design: Shenzhen Republic Design & Engineering Co., Ltd. ; Landscape Design: PASNO Landscape Design; Facade: PAG Façade Systems Co., Ltd; Lighting Design: RDesign International Lighting; Logo Design: HuangYang Design
 TAL, Right Angle Image


Founded in 1999, under the leadership of partners Xiaodu Liu, Yan Meng and Hui Wang, URBANUS is recognized as one of the most influential architecture practices in China. URBANUS developed it’s branches in Beijing, Shenzhen. Many works have become new landmarks of urban life. The projects have received prominent awards, exhibited and published worldwide. URBANUS is now exploring opportunities for international and multidisciplinary collaborations to conduct a series of research projects focused on the contemporary urban China phenomena, including creative city development, post-urban village development, typologies for hyper-density and others. The projects of URBANUS have drawn international attention due to the firm’s sensitivity to urban, historical, and social structures, its ability to integrate the potential resources in space and society, and its effectiveness in responding to the complexities of the urban environment.


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