Welcome to a concrete design jungle in the Taiwanese tropics envisioned by architect Mao Shen Chiang. Self-taught architect and owner of the go-to place for Scandinavian furniture in Taiwan, Moricasa, Mao Shen Chiang has put his stamp on both the cityscapes of Taiwan and its interior. Considering himself an architect artist, he never repeats any work. Each building grows as an individualist, yet a common trait for his work is his love for concrete. As a concrete-connaisseur, he most often opts for exposed concrete as it embodies his philosophy of making buildings last unchanged for the next century to come. True to this ideal, he has built his own home in the same material on the Yu-Guang island in Tainan surrounded by tall trees and bordering the Taiwan Strait.
Tainan is the fourth largest city in Taiwan. As Taiwan's oldest urban area, Tainan was initially established by the Dutch East India Company as a trading station called Fort Zeelandia during the period of Dutch colonisation on the island.
The house is built on Yu-Guang island, which is surrounding by trees and nature, without any building higher than five floors. “Its unique triangle shape fits into the nature, like a tree, without tensed oppression,” explains Mr. Mao.
In 2012, the architect purchased an 879 m2 piece of land. After three years of designing and three years of construction, a raw concrete pyramid with hidden design treasures is now the home of Mao Shen Chiang. The triangle shaped home covers three floors and includes a spectacular tea ceremonial room imagined like a theatrical stage facing the forest. While tradition dominates this room the rest of the home is a contemporary design den fitted with Danish design classics.
Three floors cover 330 m2 plus a large basement. The ground floor contains the combined kitchen and dining room and a lounge area behind a staircase in glass and concrete providing access to the first floor. The master bed and bathroom are also located on the ground floor. The first floor boasts a corridor with wall-to-wall bookshelves. Under the pointy ceiling of the pyramid is a guest room and a prayer room.
The combined dining and kitchen space occupies the ground floor of the triangle with open access to the garden. Mr. Mao has known the Vipp bin for years. And when told of the Vipp Kitchen by his daughter, Yu-Ting, he immediately decided to use in his house.
“My philosophy of good architecture is shared by the design intensions of the Vipp kitchen; to be practical and to last across generations,” explains Mao Shen Chiang and continues; “My favorite aspect of the kitchen is the steel table top which is easy to clean. Also, the storage ideas make it a unique piece of furniture.”
A Vipp kitchen island stands in front of a Vipp wall and tall module. The black kitchen setting shares the space with a dining scene in wood comprised of Hans J. Wegner’s ‘Y’ Chairs plus a table design by Mr. Mao himself.
Like in the rest of the house, the raw concrete is contrasted by wood in the bedroom and bathroom. The bespoke wooden bed is designed by Mr. Mao with an integrated wall spot from Vipp.
The Tea Room
The architecture accommodates two tea rooms, one on the first floor in the main building offering plenty of space for theatrical ceremonies and a small box-shaped tea room in the garden.
The architect’s favourite room is the tea room. When Mr. Mao visited Japan many years ago, he attended a traditional “Noh” theatrical performance, and found that the actor showed the traditional aesthetics in a very western, modern style such as using classic Bach music as a background music. He was fascinated by the stage form, like in the forest. Years later, this scenery was on his mind when he designed his own tea room like the fascinating stage, but this time in the real forest.
Welcome to a concrete design jungle in the Taiwanese tropics envisioned by architect Mao Shen Chiang. Self-taught architect and owner of the go-to place for Scandinavian furniture in Taiwan, Moricasa, Mao Shen Chiang has put his stamp on both the cityscapes of Taiwan and its interior. Considering himself an architect artist, he never repeats any work. Each building grows as an individualist, yet a common trait for his work is his love for concrete. As a concrete-connaisseur, he most often opts...
- Year 2017
- Work finished in 2017
- Status Completed works
- Type Single-family residence / Interior Design