Suncheon Art Platform
This design was developed for a new art museum and civic centre proposal in Suncheon Korea. The proposal is influenced by the traditional Korean Hanok courtyard house. The courtyard form naturally creates an environment which is both protective and welcoming, suitable for exhibiting and promoting art and culture.
In line with Korean tradition the entrance faces south and the river, with the hills behind. The building is square in plan – 58 x 58m – and all of the principal elements of the building are arranged around the central courtyard – 20m x 20m – which can be used as the external exhibition space. The roof is cantilevered off perimeter columns providing an entirely column free space throughout the building.
The south side of the building contains the main reception, including the tourist information area, gallery and shop. A series of doors open up along the south elevation giving generous access from the piazza. The permanent and temporary gallery spaces are located on the west side and educational facilities along the east side. The art workshop, administration offices and plant room complete the courtyard along the north side. A glazed gallery runs around all four sides giving views into and across the courtyard and surrounding spaces.
The structural principle of the building is simple and repetitive – a series of steel cantilever trusses form the courtyard with no columns around the inside. The outer perimeter columns are effectively vertical trusses 2.4m deep, supporting the roof trusses.
Façade / Roof construction
Both the façade and roof consist of an inner and outer glazed skin, either side of the cantilever trusses and supports. The void between the skins forms a thermal barrier between the internal and external environments.
The outer skin of the roof effectively filters the external lighting levels, reducing the quantum of light by 85-90%, to normal gallery conditions of 200-300lx. This is achieved by an array of opaque PV cells laminated into the glass which cover 85-90% of the surface area. The resulting array of 2500m² of PVs would be capable of generating 375KW, contributing significantly to the overall energy performance of the building.
The inner layer of the roof made of fritted glass acts as a diffusing screen, creating an even light within the building. Under direct sun light the shadows of the roof structure and PVs cells would be projected onto the ceiling and change throughout the day, whilst still creating a diffuse light within the space.
The external facades are similar with two glazed layers either side of the 2.4m wide vertical structure. In this instance the outer skin would be a patterned frit which can be varied in density according to the function inside, permitting more or less transparency.
Traditional Hanok used an underfloor heating system called Ondol, and we propose a variant for maintaining stable environmental conditions within the building. The main plant room is located in the north east corner of the building, with supplemental plant rooms above the other service spaces (admin offices, staff quarters, toilets etc). A plenum floor under the public areas is used for air distribution to floor mounted displacement grills. The double skin façade and roof acts as a plenum for the return air which is extracted at high level, evacuating any heat build-up in the envelope, and helping to maintain constant temperatures within the building.
Location: Suncheon, Korea
Team: William Conway, Florian Ballan
Illustrations: The Boundary