architect: Younghan Chung + studio Archiholic
location: Seoul, Korea
We cannot exclude the probability that our urban area might degenerate into a faceless city unawares consequent on ideational identity incurred by prevailing outward appearance with no difference through indiscriminate duplication and the influence of the Western trend spreading temporarily. It’s not an easy job to decide on the outward appearance of architecture, i.e. skin, especially in case of renovation of structures because there should be simultaneous production of the responses to the skin based on the new program to be demanded and to the internal space.
In addition, the minimum scope of renovation also includes the formation of relations with the skin by tearing down a part of a structure in order to overcome the limit of a fixed realm due to the existing structure, or simple changes in only the building skins and interior-finishing materials.
However, the main point to be mentioned here is the work of creating another look on the motive of the existing structural part (column and beam).
In other words, the architectural method lies in Recomposition, i.e. resetting the relations with the new skin by tearing down the existing covering surrounding the structure and exposing a part of the existing structure as if the structural form were to be composed of a new skin. This author selected a brick among the materials already having the porosity of a physical property itself with the aim of expressing the process of forming the weft and warp of fabric and its shape metaphorically. The brick-laying method connoting cumulation requires temporality and precision at the same time, and physical properties of a brick is slow in their change for a long time even after the completion of brick-laying process. Our project team decided on a brick for reason of some attributes of such physical properties.
In addition, we, the project team, proposed some stacking methods. Generally, the brick-laying method has a limit to the independently supportable height in cumulating bricks, so we also needed the detailed structural frame as a supplementary means.
There were an unrealistic alternative and also the option to overcome the limit to vertical height out of some stacking methods. Nevertheless, our project team came to focus on Recomposition of porosity caused by stacking rather than looking for a new alternative to the stacking method.
In other words, the project team was able to get a change in elevation by the composition consequent on the density while adjusting the porosity ratio by the method of stacking the already-set porous pattern on the elevation other than the method of flat arrangement, and at the same time, our team came to metaphorize the process of fabric formation and its shape.
This author personally thinks that the elevation by porosity is more transparent than the elevation to which glass properties are applied. According to our research, the elevation began to get more transparent while the void of the same size (1.8mx1.8m) repetitiously was filling up the limited two sides, or a facade and the elevation on the right side. This void is a strategy for skin transparency other than the character of an opening having primary functions, such as sun-lighting, view and ventilation, and also another porosity for recomposition with a new skin by exposing the forms of the existing structural parts-beam and column.
The choice of the void 1.8 meters in width and length was based on the principle of elevation composition in consideration of the minimum privacy with the maximum scale which makes it possible to observe people’s diverse behavior. In addition, there came to be spawned the recomposition of diverse multi-pores with the application of the three patterns(opening ratio of 0%, 50% and 100%) to the void as a result of the stacking method.