Tower of Time, the large-scale installation designed by the architect ZHU Xiaodi is the entity part of the artist Bingyi’s cross-media project in the 2020 Naning Youth Olympic Light and Art Festival. It appeared on the Nanjing Youth Olympic Cultural Axis on December 27, 2019 and became the symbol of the light festival.
Chinese people's understanding of time was not as simple as the Christian era. Through observing and comprehending the alternation of day and night, the cycle of four seasons, the ancient Chinese people established a time-space conception, paid more attention to the impact of environmental changes on human, initiated the inquiry of the meaning and value of life, and created plenty of poems that express the feelings of time, which have been handed down to the present and formed the cultural attribute and spiritual world of Chinese people.
To focus such a far-reaching and broad theme of time on an installation, the Tower of Time is formed by a spatial structure connected by several layers of constantly changing disks and the surrounding rising screens to present a three-dimensional, mutual concealing spatial relationship, and transform the concrete entity existence into an abstract expression of space. Under the sunshine in the day and the light at night, it produces rich light and shadow changes and dreamlike effects that provide the viewers a coherent viewing experience while moving and complete the translation from space to time. The Tower guides the viewers to look upward into the infinite sky to feel the existence and power of time and space.
Five sets of projectors of the most advanced projection technology are used around the Tower of Time to accurately project the display content on the screens in different sizes and orientations, which perfectly present the cross-media works created by artist Bingyi. At the same time, the lighting inside the Tower of Time is controlled simultaneously with the external performance, producing a fantastic artistic effect of the Time Tower.
The Tower of Time is a "light architecture" with light and information flow as the carrier. With the pure light language as the creative idea, it aims to make the architecture become the life body of light, and translate time and light that are poetic, philosophical and difficult to be materialized into a visible and perceptible new life experience. The Tower of Time is a multi-media building that embodies the spatial images of various traditional building types, such as pavilion, terrace, tower, open hall, etc. It is also a comprehensive stage that integrates various cultural functions, such as tour, performance, broadcast, exhibition, etc.
Each of the viewers standing far or near the Tower, walking into it or climbing it will have different feelings and new understanding of time and life.
ZXD Architects founded in 2013. As the chief architect, ZHU Xiaodi presided over the architectural design for nearly 30 years. His interpretation of space and expression of enthusiasm came from the nature. Until now, the building has always condensed all his enthusiasm and explaining a series of architectural problems has become the contents and results of his work.