Line and Surface Encounter Volume | The Plan
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Line and Surface Encounter Volume

Neri&Hu Design and Research Office

Neri&Hu is unique on the contemporary Chinese architecture scene. Although headquartered in Shanghai, their design philosophy ranges freely across Western and Asian culture. Moreover, working in both interior design and architecture, their projects acquire a kind of “in between” status. Well versed in top-end commercial buildings, they are also obsessed with the exquisite work of master craftsmen. The coexistence of these complex idiosyncrasies makes their practice a creative, seamless combination of extremely sophisticated, often luxurious contemporary Chinese architecture and interior design. In two interior design projects - the Comme Moi Flagship Store in Shanghai, and the Sulwhasoo Flagship Store in Seoul - linear metal tubes become an architectural feature characterizing the entire space. The Comme Moi program features a continuous horizontal brass rail - on which the showcase cabinets are hung - that wends its way through the different rooms like an unbroken thread. In the Sulwhasoo store, originally designed by Korean architect Seung H-Sang, a lattice of brass rods reconstructs the entire interior space, its box-in-box pattern superimposing a layer of virtual space and creating a unique spatial experience. The Waterhouse in Shanghai’s South Bund district kicked off wider restoration of the old city. A former Japanese army headquarters in the dock area of the old city, the building was given a new lease of life. Neri&Hu retained much of the old building’s characteristic surface materials and texture so that rough concrete walls contrast yet dialogue with the new Cor-ten steel extension on the roof. The Garage - B+ Automobile Service Center is another characteristically sensitive Neri&Hu renovation, this time in downtown Shanghai. Another decommissioned industrial space, its restoration once again took care to preserve the former building’s rough workaday texture with dark steel and metal mesh in deliberate contrast with the light-colored paint on the...

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