Zion, Kenneth, Happy, Hon, Otto, Ricci, Hang, Catherine, Jason, Yazh, with the support of WKP
The summer reading house is a project we designed for Eslite, a Taiwanese bookstore that was recently introduced to Hong Kong. To create “nature” within a shopping plaza, we weaved three basic natural elements—wood, light, and shadow in the design of the two reading houses— “Cherry” and “White-oak.”
“Cherry” and “white-oak” harmoniously stood in the atrium of Taikoo Plaza, embracing the natural sunlight that project through the glass ceiling. These two reading houses not only created reading and recreational space for mall strollers, but also defined the thematic zoning, circulation, and spatial sequence. “Cherry House” was an adult reading room built with twisted ridge geometry, creating a dynamic and captivating interior experience. The bookshelves held the neighboring frames together for lateral stabilization while at the same time displaying the best-selling books. “White-oak House” was a kids’ playroom. The slide and reading rake combined reading and playing space to accommodate different moods.
We designed the form and structure of “Cherry” with parametric modeling technique. To respond to particular environmental and functional constraints, every unique portal was parametrically generated by our computer program Rhino / Grasshopper. The information of each section profile was then sent to the digital fabrication machine and was directly cut without printing out any drawings. This way, we can streamline the process of design and making.
The summer book reading house was Eslite’s first pop-up store in Hong Kong. It took a fresh approach to public book reading space by integrating two seemingly contrasting moods—reading and playing—into one space. Instead of encouraging reading by simply displaying books (like what we usually saw at book exhibition), we transformed the whole space to create an ambience that were conducive to reading. “Cherry” delivered a reading vibe that slowed down urban strollers and encouraged them to stop to read the books on display. “White oak,” on the other hand, gave space for children to play while accommodating parents to read alongside.