Far from a quick-fix band-aid, the "temporary" project for the Taipei Sales Center by Oyler Wu Collaborative takes elegant advantage of a restricted program, embellished with both anatomical and artistic analogies. In anticipation of the site becoming a 16-story residential tower (also at the hands of Oyler Wu), the 5-story corner building will be renovated as the future complex’s sales center, complete with meeting and exhibition spaces.
The structure is covered in a thin but tightly-wrapped skin, punctured by a void that runs in between the south and eastern facades (a direct reference to Gordon Matta-Clark's split-houses). To extend the anatomical metaphor, the punctures are embellished with suture-like detailing, while the intersecting void is part respiratory passageway, part asymmetrical spine.
Project Description from Oyler Wu Collaborative:
"Often the unusual circumstances surrounding the design of a project leads to the most unusual results. In the case of this temporary sales center in Taipei by Oyler Wu Collaborative, the convergence of a set of ongoing architectural interests converged with an unusual site, timeline, program, and developer to create an unexpected outcome. The existing building is really a conglomeration of different buildings, built over several decades. The outcome is a five-story volume pierced (quite literally) and interconnected by an intricate ribbon of rope, steel, and fabric. The renovation creates an entirely new identity and is suggestive of the modern intervention that will soon occupy the site."
"Located on the future site of a new16-story residential tower (also designed by Oyler Wu Collaborative), the developers were interested in renovating the existing corner building to become the sales center for that future building. The program includes meeting and exhibition rooms as well as a model home. Interestingly, the program called for only half of the square footage of the existing building. With the most desirable spaces being on the upper floors, the second and third floors were left unprogrammed."
"The initial design brief called for a new “skin” with a thickness of no more than 7 inches to work within. The limited programmatic needs created the potential for an intervention that somehow made use of those spaces. With the desire to create a “spatial ribbon” that flowed between facades and into the building, one of the primary features of the building is a torqued void that cuts through the southern facade of the building and then re-emerges on the eastern facade. In the spirit of Gordon Matta-Clark, this void offers unusual views of the city through, out of, and deep into the heart of the building."
"With much of building acting as a simple volume, the intricacy of the detail in the facade creates a visual and spatial connector between the openings. Beginning at an oculus at the ground floor, the ribbon flows up through the voids and spreads across the facade eventually linking up with windows, wrapping into adjacent facades."
Architects: Oyler Wu Collaborative\
Project Team: Dwayne Oyler, Jenny Wu, Huy Le, Sanjay Sukie, Mike Piscitello, Zhao Ji Luo
Client: JUT Land Development