Xintiandi Penthouse by Joyce Wang is "a celebration of metal"

Joyce Wang
Add to MyArchiExpo favorites

Sheet metal, weathered metal and metal cabling are the three that inspired the architect for designing.

Inside Festival 2014: Hong Kong architect Joyce Wang explains how she incorporated her client's "love for metals" into the interior of a luxury Shanghai penthouse (+ movie).

Xintiandi Penthouse, which won the Residential category at this year's Inside Festival, is a three-story apartment in the heart of Shanghai’s Xintiandi district.

"The project is a celebration of metal," says Wang in the movie, which was filmed at Inside Festival 2014 in Singapore.

"The three metals that we were inspired by were sheet metal, weathered metal and metal cabling. The brief became extracting how these three metals could exist in this interior space."Wang created a curved staircase up to the roof of the penthouse out of bent sheet metal and lined the living room walls with thin slats of Corten steel.

Metal cabling was woven between the balustrade and the baseline of the apartment's central staircase to create a screened-off dining area.

"In the middle of the sweeping circular staircase is the dining area and we wanted the cables to envelope it and create privacy," says Wang. "[We used] five kilometres of metal cabling to create a screen that nestles the diners."

The staircase screen is a reference to the industry the client made his money in, Wang claims.

"The client for the project was a wealthy businessman who made his fortune selling micro motors," she explains. "For the design of the staircase we really looked at the construction of a motor and how cables are strung inside of it to create this dynamic form."

Wang says that much of the interior of the apartment is informed by the client's history.

"We respected the client's heritage, his personality and love for metals and that is what drove the project," Wang says. "Because there is a manufacturing industry in China, a very very heavy one, [the project] is Chinese in that sense."

Despite the industrial nature of the design, Wang doesn't believe it is overbearing.

"I think we managed to inject some femininity into those materials that are traditionally very hard by manipulating the form and making them more digestible in scale," she says.

The apartment is unusual because none of the bedrooms have windows. Instead, windows line a shared corridor which leads to the bedrooms.

"We flipped the common notion of where bedrooms should be in residential design," says Wang. "Because the family is very close, we devoted those windows to a corridor space that would be shared by the children of the family."Wang used reflective screens to allow daylight to enter the rooms, while also providing privacy.

"We created these one-way mirror screens that allow light to filter into the bedrooms," she says. "But during the day, because there's more light outside than inside, there's [also] a great sense of privacy."Inside Festival took place at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore from 1 to 3 October. Award entries for next year's festival are open from February 2015.

We'll be publishing interviews with all the category winners from this year's event over the coming weeks. You can watch all the movies below.

Xintiandi Penthouse by Joyce Wang is "a celebration of metal"