Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

Chinese studio Archiplein have designed a building of rare beauty in a stunning rocky landscape, based on traditional Chinese paintings.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

Traditional Chinese painting

The project is located in Anhui province, in one of the five sacred Taoist mountains of China and the main influence for the design was its integration into this sanctified context.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Archiplein designed a building that merges with the landscape, like in traditional Chinese landscape paintings. In this type of painting both built and natural elements are represented as one. The environment and the building are wholly integrated and eventually form one entity.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Likewise, Archiplein designed a building that performs in a similar way in relation to the surrounding landscape. The tea house fits perfectly into nature. The natural environment coexists with the man-built structure in complete harmony while it complements the sacred local identity and maintains a strong relationship with the surrounding setting.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

The raw, brutal wood-cast concrete volume follows the general movement of the landscape and becomes one with the wild natural backdrop, turning out to be almost invisible.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

The tea house’s walls form a zigzag pattern in and out on both levels, creating a series of facets along the lakeside façade. Archiplein’s approach was to “consider the building as the continuity of the existing topography so as to reduce its impact on the land. The building is bended by following the natural movement and defines as a set of different faces that minimizes its size.”

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Moreover the tea house showcases an impressive set of dozens of square windows, that are irregularly positioned on the walls and ceiling of the building. This results to a strong light intrusion which creates an endless game between the concrete mass and the void.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

The outcome is the formation of a heavily dramatic space with a haunting interior atmosphere that enhances the highly spiritual aura of the place.

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

©Frédéric Henriques

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

© Archiplein

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

© Archiplein

Tianzhoushan tea house by Archiplein

© Archiplein

 

Words: Ivi Vassilopoulou

 

 


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