In light of Guangzhou Design Week, a single 3m x 3m x 3m cube was perched amongst the grasslands of Foshan, a city in China’s Guandong Province. Local design company C.DD summarises the concept of the installation’s design in one phrase, stating that the installation can be likened to the “origin of everything”.
Due to the size limitations of the exhibition work, chief designers Xiao Pinghe and Xing Linli decided to create a structure with the highest possible volume in order to express the theme of “city”. Due to the limitation of space, the designers hoped that observers would be forced to take note of the subtle nuances of traditional culture that were weaved into the installation.
Within the structure, there is a one-way path that allows passage for a single person to enter the exhibition at a time. When an observer walks through the cube, the two squares created by the bamboo wall and exterior form the Chinese character hui, which symbolises their concept of “return to the origin”.
The exterior is a true homage to Foshan, with a map of Foshan city and Nanhai county, as well as the Chinese character for Foshan indented through the steel plate structure. Beyond the steel walls, the designers used bamboo to form a rectangular space around the center of the cube. In the structure’s core lies an unfinished paper Chinese lion and a traditional Chinese drum, which come to life with a combination of background music and flashing lights.
Depending on the time of day, the lighting that illuminates the structure will offer visitors a varied experience. The design team hoped that the installation’s ever-changing facets would inspire visitors to uncover each visual dimension, and in turn, lead them to rediscover the many layers of Foshan’s traditional culture.