Steven Holl to design Qingdao Culture and Art Center in China

30 October 2013 (Last Updated October 30th, 2013 18:30)

Steven Holl Architects has won a competition to design the new Qingdao City Culture and Art Center in China.

Qingdao Culture and Art Center

Steven Holl Architects has won a competition to design the new Qingdao City Culture and Art Center in China.

The architectural firm beat off competition from OMA and Zaha Hadid Architects.

Planned to be built in Qingdao’s new extension and serve 700,000 people, the two million ft² winning proposal will feature a set of four art museums.

The linear form of the Jiaozhou Bay Bridge is carried into the large site, in the form of a Light Loop, which houses gallery spaces and links all aspects of the landscape and public spaces.

Steven Holl said the increased Light Loop "allows maximum porosity and movement across the site, and permits natural sound mixed breezes that blow from the ocean to flow across the site."

Located within the masterplan are Art Islands, or Yishudao, which take the form of three sculpted cubes, and four small landscape art islands that form outdoor sculpture gardens.

Plans also include five terraced reflecting pools, which will animate the landscape and bring light to levels below through skylights.

A central square will be built for large gatherings at the centre of the site overlooking a large water garden.

The Modern Art museum shapes the central square while the Public Arts museum forms the main structure while entering from the south.

The North Yishudao features the Classic Art Museum, with a hotel at its top levels, and the South Yishudao, which floats over the large south reflecting pool, houses the Performing Arts Program.

All horizontal galleries in the Light Loop receive natural light from the roof that can be controlled with 20% screens as well as blackout options.

The 20m wide section of the Light Loop enables side lighting to the lower level galleries, and provides space for two galleries side by side in order to prevent dead-end circulation.

Sustainable features of the project include photovoltaic cells, which will provide 80% of the museum’s electrical needs and the reflecting ponds with recycled water, while 480 geothermal wells will provide heating and cooling.


Image: The two million ft² winning proposal features a conglomerate of four art museums. Photo: Courtesy of Steven Holl Architects.