The store as a huge vault, concealing precious merchandise.
Papyrus is an optician's retail space, and the client wanted an eye-catching landmark.

Wallga Associates applied the concept of concealment - a good way to maximize the perceived value of the merchandise. Until you open the door and go inside, the store is nothing more than a big safe.

Once you enter, the experience is something like being in a secret, de luxe vault.

At first glance, all you see is the restrained asile space surriunded by elegant antiqued walls. you have your own secret time to search for a stylish pair of glasses. Most stores expose their product to attract customers; that's the common-sense approach. But we want to challenge the fundamental paradigms of retail space.

Wallga Associates figured that efficiently closing out the space world ultimately elevate the shopper's concentration on the product. We even dimmed the lighting throughout the store, except for LED spotlights that pick out the 'hidden' products.

Location :
Sinsa-dong 614, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Korea
Project :
Retail space for optician
Concept :
The store as a huge vault, concealing precious merchandise
Client :
Area :
118 M2
Completed :
June 2012

Wallga Associates

Polarion Square is lighting company Polarion’s office building. It is used for office, factory, and communal facilities for Polarion and their sub-contractors/suppliers. Designed by Chang-gil Kim of Samjung Architects & Engineers from 2009 to 2010, the building was finished in 2011. Made of exposed concrete, it feels like Tadao Ando combined with MVRDV’s way of massing.

The building is based on 2.6mx2.6m module, created by putting 2, 4, and 8 modules together with a little push and pull between the buildings. On the slab connecting the two buildings is a roof garden, and the space in between the buildings is opened to allow view to the park behind Polarion Square.

Architects:  Chang Gil Kim, Samjung architect
Location: Hwaseong-si, Gyeonggi-do, Korea
Project : Polarion Square
Client: Polarion
Building Scope : F8, B1
Site Area : 2,314㎡
Site Coverage Area : 1,370.01㎡
Construction : Sehan Construction
Total Floor Area : 6,675㎡
Structure : RC

The clubhouse at Lake Hills Suncheon is located on a hill in Juam-myeon, Suncheon, Jeollanam-do. It is about a 30 minutes’ drive from the Yeosu Airport and an hour’s drive from Gwangju and overlooks the panoramic scenery. As for its topographical features, the site is surrounded by Mt. Oseongsan to the southeast and commands a magnificent view of the vast ridge to the northwest.

Suncheon, Jeollanam-do, is home of the Seonamsa Temple (AD 529), which was built during the Three Kingdoms period and the Songgwangsa Temple (AD 1197) Suncheon, Jeollanam-do, which was the center of Korean Buddhism in the Goryeo Dynasty. These two structures have a distinct historical value in the architectural history of Korea from the viewpoint of construction techniques and aesthetics. In Suncheon, numerous traditional Korean-style houses have been preserved. In short, the area has a long-standing history and traditional value in terms of architecture.

We set up a goal to take advantage of the local unique characteristics and to create a structure that reflects the intentions of the client and also the traditional Korean architecture. Our intensions were to interpret tectonic elements of the traditional Korean wooden building, while accommodating the club’s complex function into a wooden structure that expresses the Korean architectural beauty. We redefined the architectural elements reflecting Korean traditions rather than reproducing or imitating. This was done in a way that reflects the architectural characteristics and spatial aesthetics of the building and focuses on representing the aesthetics, space perception and sentiments(emotions) of general Korean architecture. In particular, we applied modern construction methods as well as structural improvements in order to utilize the long-span space while reproducing the diagonally curved roofs and the wooden structure of Korean architecture.

For siting, we took into consideration the topography of the golf course facing the northwesterly direction and placed it in the center of the entire lot where cutting and filling are minimized. Also, as for the orientation of the structure, among locations commanding a fair view of the layered mountain ridges, we chose the one that offers the best view as the central axis and secured a vista of the distant ridges and sunset.

The internal circulation from the canopy at the entrance to the lobby, restaurant and the private dining rooms are re-interpretation of the eaves of traditional Korean roofs. It is a wooden structure with the 14m-long span and 12m-high inverted arch. We pursued the structural beauty of traditional Korean architecture, in which the wooden structure itself serves not only as the structure, but also as the interior finishing material. Spaces using water such as the locker rooms, saunas, and bathing area, were built with concrete. The roof is inclined so that it serves as an eco-friendly rooftop green space. Additionally, external light is brought inside the building through the lifted inclined planes.

Depending on the use of the program, the mass of the building can be largely divided into either wooden mass or concrete mass. The feelings of a box-like solid and simple mass, rendered by the concrete and the soft, elegant and warm feeling of the curved wooden structure, are balanced together while creating a juxtaposed tension.

The construction materials were simplified to stainless steel, wood, stone and glass. Only the characteristics and physical properties of the materials are presented and the patterns and shapes are restrained as much as possible. Granite stone, use in traditional Korean architecture, was mainly used. For the wooden structure, the North American Glulam was manufactured in the United States and processed and prefabricated in Japan before it was imported. As for the metal joint system, the BVD hanger joint structural system developed in Germany was used.

Architect: Ken Min Architects
Location: Jeollanam-do, South Korea
Client: Lake Hills Golf & Resorts Group
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: Kim Yong Kwan

Ken Min Architects

ⓒ copyrights 2003-2018 Designersparty, all rights reserved. all material published remains the exclusive copyright of Designersparty.