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Yunnan Culture & Arts Center, Yunnan

2010
BIAD Beijing Institute of Architectural Design
approx. 70.000 m2
Oliver Kühn
Alexander Moritz
Tilman Richter von Senfft, Henning Hesse, Peter Irmscher

The design for the new YUNNAN CULTURE + ARTS CENTER integrates the parameters set by the adjacent Yunnan New Museum and develops the site further into a true cultural forum formed by three world class buildings taking a plaza in their middle.
People access the site over a green North South orientated boulevard and get to the “Plaza of Arts”, where they have good orientation to the entrances of the Museum, the new Opera and an extension, which is –as today- subject to future plannings on the site.
The buildings are different in use and also in their appearance, just like artwork is different from opera music. Like three precious jewels, however, they relate to each other as friends and invite people to their offerings. All parking and delivery is arranged from the perimeter without harming the quality of the plaza, simple and clean.
The main feature of the landscape planning starting from the museum is taken up by the new design and brought further into an all embracing and unifying concept for the rest of the site.
The design for the new opera building is addressed to three main objectives, that is: emotional, functional and economical.
Clad in polished aluminium panels the body of the opera is shining in the sun light like a sculpture made of mother of pearl, forming a great iconic building to the adjacent motor way, giving identity and attracting many more people to come and visit.
From the plaza and over a generous ramp paved in smooth red natural stone, that stretches all the way into the building the visitor gets into a large reception foyer and into the large performance halls further back.
Glazed circular perforations in the building skin allow the sunlight to filter deep into the building, the light reflects on the polished stone floor and creates a pattern like white water lilies on a garden pond.
In plan the building is organized functionally as to allow for optimized work flow without interfering with the public. In the front part and open to the plaza all public and performance areas are arranged. To the back and with easy access from the perimeter road all operative and process related areas are arranged.
The offices for the management are organized on the upper levels and provide a good working atmosphere.
The construction of the new opera is very economical. Based on a rational concrete body in conventional construction technology the open parts of the foyer and the façade is made in metal, all prefabricated and easy to fix. It establishes a harmonious relationship with the neighbouring museum building and allows the future, third building to develop an own identity without loosing the balance on the site. Like three brothers and sisters, related but all different and with individual characters the three buildings will form a world class cultural forum conveying an image of excellence, both visually and from its content.