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Wutopia Lab: No fear. No distractions. The ability to let that which does not matter truly slide. ——《Fight Club》
2023年4月，Wutopia Lab设计的Copper Blockhouse 铜堡在EKA天物创意园区正式落成开放。
In April 2023, Copper Blockhouse Copper Castle designed by Wutopia Lab was officially completed and opened in EKA Tianwu Creative Park.
▽项目与周边环境鸟瞰 Aerial view
同病相怜的一对中年男人 Two Middle-aged Man in a Same Predicament
You are not your job, you’re not how much money you have in the bank. You are not the car you drive. You’re not the contents of your wallet. You are not your fucking khakis. You are all singing, all dancing crap of the world. ——《Fight Club》
In 2021, I was invited by my friend Qiye, to design a central building in the center of the creative industry park that I renovated for him. However, we are both spaced out those days as our wives are facing a similar dilemma. We are distracted, yet tried to take our minds off anxiety by working, but it was hard to fully concentrate.
Various possibilities of functions such as clubs and café were vetoed, as these ordinary functions cannot convince the two worried middle-aged men. Eventually, we agreed on a multi-functional spiritual fortress to be the central building. I said to Qiye that we needed to justify our existence through this project, which can not be done with a commercial development. A museum is a church of the modern age, and it might settle our restless souls. Therefore, we used the museum as the base of the work.
Nautical machinery and ships are huge metal objects, therefore, I decided to build the building entirely of metal, and copper was chosen in the end. I am superstitious that metal shell is strong enough to protect our frighted souls.
▽航海机械厂厂区鸟瞰 Aerial view
我要造船那样造一个铜堡 I Want to Build a Copper Blockhouse the Way a Ship is Built
First you have to give up. First you have to know, not fear, know that someday you’re gonna die. It’s only after we’ve lost everything that we’re free to do anything. ——《Fight Club》
The form of the design is the original arched shed on the site. The building is an arch, and that’s it. It was the nautical machine factory that inspired me to build this fortress the way a ship is built. Therefore, the construction of the building started with the keel, which was made of welded structural steel from 150mm to 220mm wide, covered by copper plates on both sides to form the internal and external facades. This is the origin of Full Metal Jacket.
▽拱形车棚改造前 Arched carport before renovation
▽改造后 After transformation
There’s a gleaming stainless-steel space in the fortress, the cabin of the ship. It functions a café, as well as a stage, with a kitchen and a bathroom. This is the only decoration of the Copper Blockhouse, symbolizing the sharpness of our souls, and the desires behind.
▽改造后的堡垒建筑内部空间 The interior space of the renovated fortress building
The grass on the north side of the fortress was designed into a huge black wading pool. The Copper Blockhouse is then presented as a submarine, emerging from water surface like a shimmering whale, quietly, silently, rippling inside.
▽漂浮于黑色水池的金属堡垒 A metal fortress floating in a black pool
尽管无处可去，但这个建筑是我们的救赎 Despite Nowhere to go, this Building is Our Salvation
Every evening, I died and every evening, I was born again. Resurrected.——《Fight Club》
The rest of the park was designed by an excellent architect who gave the park a new look. However, I kept the newspaper wall on south side of the shed, the human security, the big tree, and the rockery. I tried to remain some fragments of the memory of the site because I am increasingly reluctant to forget. Each building in the park is abundantly designed, and that’s why I preferred to keep the Copper Blockhouse simple. If the whole park is a partita, the Copper Blockhouse is a silent pause.
▽设计保留具有场地片段与记忆的元素 The design retains elements with site fragments and memories
I ambushed a variety of possibilities in this “pause”, the fortress – exhibitions, performances, lectures, parties, a museum, even skateboarding activities. The café can be used as a stage if keep the gate towards the pool open. With the water surface drawing down, a glittering catwalk appears. We once imagined here to be a dramatic show, but after the year of 2022, I’ve changed my mind. I hope there would be glorious fireworks, a choir performance on the water, singing about the pain and the hope. Because “What’s past is prologue.”
▽设计旨在赋予其更多元化的场地功能属性 The design aims to give it a more diversified functional property of the site
This is your life, and it’s ending one minute at a time.
▽夜景下的场地空间氛围 The atmosphere of the site space under the night view
The name “Copper Blockhouse” is inspired by an air raid shelter reserved on the project site, a solid fortress.
Without pain, without sacrifice, we would have nothing.
▽首层平面图 1st plan
▽北侧立面图 north elevation
▽西侧立面图 West elevation
Project name: Copper Blockhouse
Design firm: Wutopia Lab
Chief architect: YU Ting
Project manager: MU Zhilin
Design team: MI Kejie, XU Nan, DAI Ruoyu
Construction drawing design firm: Shanghai Southeast United Engineering Design Co., Ltd
Client: Shanghai Jiayun Investment Management Development Co., Ltd
Construction firm: Shanghai Qikufangyun Culture Technology Co., Ltd
Lighting consultant: ZHANG Chenlu
Photo Credits: CreatAR Images
Project location: Pudong, Shanghai, China
Project year: 2021.4-2023.4
Area: 405 sqm
Materials: copper, stainless steel, micro cement, glass
更多 Read more about: Wutopia Lab