Harmony with nature and bamboo for the floating Teahouse

Simple forms and natural materials to appreciate the traditional tea ceremony

by Malcolm Clark
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The Bamboo Courtyard Teahouse is located in Yangzhou, a city north-west of Shanghai. A floating tea house with a courtyard, made entirely of bamboo, designed by Chinese architect Sun Wei, one of the partners of HWCD - Harmony World Consulting & Design.

HWCD projects seek to highlight the existing connection between architecture and design, blending traditional Asian aesthetics with a more modern design language.

The Bamboo Courtyard Teahouse incorporates the basic Chinese traditions of 'garden design' in harmony with the natural environment. Bamboo is arranged vertically and horizontally to give “depth” to the structure of the buildings, while allowing the 'skin' the same changes and transforms as you move through space.

Tall rows of bamboo form corridors along the outer walkway and are arranged asymmetrically on the lake.

Traditionally, the courts of Yangzhou consist of pavilions facing inwards, turning the courtyard into a landscaped area. Taking inspiration from this approach, the bamboo courtyard was designed from a square-based area; the shape has been broken down into small volumes that create an internal landscape. Each of the rooms has a view of the surrounding lake and over the inner courtyard. Seen from outside, the Teahouse has a cubic form, with a variation of solids and voids. The strong verticality becomes more noticeable at night when the lights of the teahouse illuminate the surroundings.

The simple shape and natural materials like bamboo and bricks establish the coherent blend of architecture and nature. The voids in the outer 'skin' enhance the natural ventilation inside the courtyard, while the thick brick wall keeps the heat in the winter, reducing the need for mechanical heating and cooling.

Tea is one of the most precious cultural heritages of China and has been popular for thousands of years. A traditional tea ceremony requires a modest environment in order to better appreciate the long preparation process required. The Bamboo Teahouse Courtyard offers the perfect setting for this experience, stressing the underlying importance of design and architecture.

Comments
  • bernardo re

    L'opera è certamente singolare e piacevole, ben articolata in un luogo molto bello ma...... se galleggiasse davvero saremmo costretti a raccogliere i mattoni in acqua. In realtà appare ben piantata a terra. arch. bernardo re (occhio ai termini)

  • Malcolm Clark

    Poetic licence!

  • bernardo re

    ok, ben detto, saluti, arch bernardo re

  • ivonne ariza

    un espacio que muestra características de la cultura, combinadas con elementos modernos, materiales de su entorno y una iluminación muy sutil enmarcando y dando vida a las circulaciones.

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References
Bamboo Courtyard Teahouse 61

Bamboo Courtyard Teahouse

Yangzhou / China / 2012