Wutopia Lab has recently designed a welcoming stage of a sales’ center in Huzhou, China, as a surreal garden that combines architecture, landscape, lighting, and art installation, where people around this neighborhood, as well as people from Huzhou could come to enjoy.
In White Upland, Wutopia Lab‘s lead architect Yu Ting started from his own experience and decided to make ‘dream’ as the design principle. Instead of changing the façade of the sales’ center, he chose to cover it by his design. While the original sales’ center remains the most normal, boring condition, it becomes the most powerful contrast to this distinctive, history-making White Upland.
The main narrative of White Upland was inspired by Yu Ting’s daughter, Tangtang’s dream. Forest is one of the most frequent elements in Tangtang’s dream. Yu Ting used 108 white steel columns in three sizes to form this abstract forest. Then follow the visitors’ circulation, he made different landscapes, such as caves, hills, streams, rocks, highlands, waterfalls and theatres in the woods.
He referenced from Rene Magritte’s painting, to abstract those landscapes. He also used facilities to create weather here, then it has starry sky, cloudy sky, sunrise, fog, sounds and smells from the nature, and a bonfire. Making them white makes all of them surreal. Eventually, Yu Ting succeeded in using the most generic materials and manipulations to build an exuberant anti-genetic dream-land, a 3300 m2 White Upland by 106 tons of steel.
At the entrance of White Upland, there is an ink garden surrounded by 16 red maple trees. The 50 tons of black mountain stones are like ink, which in the white dream implies a trace of local history, geography and culture as the south of the Yangtze River.
Going through the Ink Garden, before entering the forest that suggests the future, you will encounter the White Upland’s eye, a dark blue but cool-lighted cave. In this moment when you paused in the “eye”, you will understand that no matter how much uncertainty life has, but at least this moment is firm and happy, is hope.