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CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

China Architecture News - Feb 28, 2023 - 16:30   2016 views

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

Beijing and Shanghai-based architecture practice CLOU architects has added bright reddish cube and a circular bridge to an atrium of the newly opened Future City Mall in Qingdao, China

Named Qingdao Future City, the 2,283-square-metre space takes cues from French post-impressionist painter Henri Rousseau’s primitive and mysterious scenes in his mysterious paintings. 

Commissioned by Vanke, the project consisted of the design of the fourth-floor atrium of the newly opened Future City Mall in Qingdao.

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

Located in Qingdao's northern district, Vanke Future City is a brand-new shopping and leisure destination devoted to mingling aesthetics, creativity, and social experiences, hoping to bring fresh vitality to Qingdao’s old town and its surroundings.

The crux of the design challenge was to create an iconic social space, tempting customers to the mall's upper levels and energizing its retail and dining areas. This led to the concept of an immersive jungle garden.

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

Today's consumers value comfort and intimacy in commercial and public spaces, and cherish nature, outdoors, wellness, and social interaction above all. 

Responding to this, the firm decided to integrate nature and art into an immersive space. Drawing inspiration from the paintings of Henri Rousseau, CLOU created a vibrant, experientially unique jungle garden.

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

Tropical Forest with Monkeys, Henri Rousseau

In the atrium’s central space, the firm chose a two-storey red cube structure as the focal point, surrounded by a jungle of plants and water. Reminiscent of the primitive and mysterious scenes in Rousseau’s paintings, the vibrant colours, light, and shade invoke an imaginative and dreamlike atmosphere.

CLOU chose bright red as a primary colour to create a striking visual impression to quickly grab people’s attention. Like the flowers and animals that populate Rosseau’s mysterious paintings, the firm created a dazzling contrast between the colourful subject, detailed background, and a pleasing sense of illusion. 

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

A circular bridge on the first floor connects the central cube to its surrounding areas with varying staircases. 

Tropical greenery, seating, water features, and staircases create human-scale details, enhancing the walking experience and enticing customers to linger and explore. 

This alluring, outdoor feeling provides its visitors with a place where their imaginations can roam freely.

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

A variety of paths and steps create fun and interactive scenes for socializing, exploring, and taking photos. The entire atrium serves as a public space for the local community to relax and enjoy a perfect venue for joyful community events.

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

With the unique spatial experience created for Qingdao Future City, CLOU hopes to activate the social and artistic potential of the commercial space by creating a fun, intimate, and pleasurable place for creating lasting memories.

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects adds bright reddish cube to atrium to evoke Henri Rousseau’s mysterious paintings

CLOU architects also added shades of pink and stepped terraces to a commercial complex in Qingdao, China. 

The studio transformed an abandoned shopping mall with an immersive garden using different species of plants, greenery, and water components in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia, China.

Project facts

Project Name: Qingdao Vanke Future City

Designer: CLOU architects

Client: Vanke

Scope: L4 atrium interior

Program: Retail

Location: Qingdao, China

Size: 2,283 sqm

Status: Completion in 2022

Design Team: Jan Clostermann, Lin Li, Xinhui Ding, Rentian Liu, Jingyao Cheng, Qiao Ding, Christopher Biggin

LDI: Qingdao Tengyuan Design Institute Co., Ltd

Landscape: TOA Landscape Architecture

MEP: Promising Engineering and Consulting (Beijing) Co., Ltd

All images © Zhu Runzi.

All images © CLOU architects.

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