The Taozhu Red Memorial Renovation / Atelier Yipan

The Taozhu Red Memorial Renovation / Atelier Yipan

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  • Area Area of this architecture project Area: 
    1238 m²

  • Year Completion year of this architecture project


  • Photographs Photographs:  Zhuoying Wu

  • Lead Architect:

    Chenjun Dai

Relationship between southeast entrance and volume. Image © Zhuoying Wu

Text description provided by the architects. The project is located in Taozhu street, zhuji, Zhejiang, which used to be a temporary sales office of Xiangsheng real estate. In 2020, the building was acquired by the local government to serve as a local memorial museum for Taozhu. The irregular shape of the original land use scope was not continued utilized in the land transfer examination and approval. The property line in this project can only be a rectangular area within the existing wall, and 15 meters width of public space should be left on the east side. 

The village, surrounded by urban development. Image © Zhuoying Wu
Street corner in the morning. Image © Zhuoying Wu

Within the limits of the building property line, we added two volumes to the site: a management room for the office and a public toilet. Mr. Qiu, the main planner of this Memorial, mentioned that “local memory should be traced back to the memory of the local earth”. As far as the history of physical space form is concerned, Zhuji is a typical water town in the south of the Yangtze River, and the “courtyard” is the prototype of its space. 

The plan photo . Image © Zhuoying Wu
The relationship between Northeast main entrance and the street. Image © Zhuoying Wu
Looking at the museum from the inner courtyard. Image © Zhuoying Wu

We take the ‘interwoven courtyard’ as the design concept and hope to create a spatial experience by entering the alley of the village from the city street and then returning to the terrace courtyard of home by the courtyard space interwoven with warp and weft. In this way, the design can carry the path, experience, and emotions of visitors. The tiered courtyards spread out from the streets of the city, welcoming citizens from the streets into the site in different gestures. Different outdoor courtyards, with different scales and turns in different directions, lead into the exhibition hall. 

courtyard. Image © Zhuoying Wu
The courtyard. Image © Zhuoying Wu

After entering the main exhibition hall, different scales of the exhibition halls interweave and connect with each other, slowly unfold. The light gradually enters the exhibition hall from the top, the sides, and the distance, and the atmosphere created by the light and shade continuously unfolds in the diagonal space, and the tension of the space is constantly presented. End up with the visit of the museum and return back to the outdoor, there is an introverted and quiet square courtyard, where the emotions after the visiting can be released and the inner peace can be obtained. 

The lobby . Image © Zhuoying Wu
The remaining steel column . Image © Zhuoying Wu
the remaining structure and the top light. Image © Zhuoying Wu

Due to the change of the function, we wanted to minimize the commercial atmosphere of the original building, but at the same time, we didn’t want the original building to disappear completely. We believe that even though the original building is temporary, it was a “memory” of a time on the site. Therefore, we adopted a series of strategies to establish the relationship between the new and old buildings: masking, exposing, breaking, standing, separating, and stretching. 

One worker walking in the exhibition hall. Image © Zhuoying Wu

The exterior walls of the old houses are white with gray, forming the keynote of the villages in the South of the Yangtze River. We use dark gray art print as the background color, then spray white paint. Because the strength of the wall absorbing coating is random and uneven, the exterior wall effect of the gray change is formed.

Stretching. Image © Zhuoying Wu
The texture of wall. Image © Zhuoying Wu
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