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Atelier Deshaus


Founded in Shanghai in 2001 and working throughout China, Atelier Deshaus currently comprises partners Liu Yichun and Chen Yifen both of whom graduated from the Faculty of Architecture, Tongju University.
The designers began by creating mainly public buildings and housing which brought them international recognition and numerous awards such as Business Weeks/Architectural Record China Awards, WA Chinese Architecture Awards and FAR EAST Architecture Awards.
The design studio’s guiding principle is "the contemplation of the self and the surroundings (...) continuously searching for a new understanding of reason (li) which does not impede its relationship with the traditional philia of poetics and ethics (qing)".

Familiarizing themselves with the location and embedding it in memory is a key element of their design process. In the practice’s projects, many of which are in Shanghai, China’s past and history of architecture are linked to the present, in an attempt to better understand contemporary concepts.

From this initial vision and design objectives, Deshaus integrates various elements such as landscape, humanity and functionality "until space and form appear in a structured way".
In recent years their body of work is noted for various art museums. Between 2014 and 2016 the practice completed the Shanghai Artron Arts Center, West Bund Art Center, Long Museum West Bund, and Modern Art Museum. Followed more recently by the Taizhou Contemporary Art Museum, Taizhou and Qintai Art Museum in Wuhan (2019).

The Artron Shanghai Arts Center was reconstructed from the Shanghai Towel 16th Factory, based "on the principle of retaining as much as possible, taking advantage of the original space and fully considering the convenience and economical efficiency of the construction". The combined effect of the original building’s industrial scale and the ambiance of the new design is remarkable. Inside, the transformation of the original towel factory’s waste treatment station (the "Dingyi Building") is the focal point. The project was designed in collaboration with the artist Dingyi, using various combinations of colored ceramic tiles as the primary decorative material.

The West Bund Art Center factory reconstruction project (Shanghai Aircraft Manufactory), while the Long Museum West Bund, on the banks of the Huangpu River, is on a site formerly used as a wharf for coal transportation.
The new design features "a vaulted-umbrella” structure, a cantilevered structure with independent walls. In line with the free wall plan, shear walls are embedded in the existing basement and connected to the existing grid of columns, transforming the previous garage space into an exhibition hall."

Interior walls and ceilings have a concrete finish. Their deceptively geometric shape "creates a unique spatial experience which offers both a sense of protection and sense of freedom". In addition, "the large overhanging structures confer a feeling of strength yet lightness which aligns the museum with the existing industrial structures, not just from a temporal but also a spatial point of view". (Domus)
Also of note is the Huaxin Wisdom Hub (2015), again in Shanghai. The multi-function building has exhibition and conference rooms.

Located on a small, narrow and high-density site, surrounded by roads, a parking lot and skyscrapers, the Huaxin Wisdom Hub is "an introspective building. A suspended concrete ring marks the hub’s boundary. The complex is divided into four separate parts, arranged in a circle. Due to the suspended walls, interior and exterior spaces are blurred.

The magazine Architecture Record selected Atelier Deshaus as one of the 10 most avant-garde practices of 2011. Their work has been showcased worldwide in important exhibitions, prestigious magazines such as A+U, Area, Lotus, Future, Mark, Wallpaper and Casabella, and books about contemporary Chinese design including“Positions: Portrait of a New Generation of Chinese Architects” (Actar, 2008), “The Phaidon Atlas of 21st Century World Architecture” (Phaidon 2008) and “Architecture in China” (TASCHEN, 2007).
Atelier Deshaus selected works and projects
- Qintai Art Museum, Wuhan (Cina), 2019
- Taizhou Contemporary Art Museum, Taizhou, Zhejiang (Cina), 2019
- Golden Ridge Upper-cloister, Chengde (Cina), 2018
- House ATO, Pechino (Cina), 2018
- Renovation and Reuse of 80000 Silo Warehouse, Shanghai (Cina), 2017
- Tea House in Li Garden /  Shanghai (Cina), 2016
- Xinchang Village's Central Kindergarten in Tianquan county, Sichuan (Cina), 2016
- Footbridge on Rihui River, Shanghai (Cina), 2016
- Modern Art Museum, Shanghai (Cina), 2016
- The R&D and innovative port of AIAC, Shanghai (Cina), 2015
- Atelier Deshaus Office on West Bund, Shanghai (Cina), 2015
- Blossom Pavilion, Shanghai (Cina), 2015
- Hua Xin Wisdom Hub, Shanghai (Cina), 2015
- Shanghai Jiading Tao Li Yuan school, Shanghai (Cina), 2015
- Long Museum West Bund, Shanghai (Cina), 2014
- West Bund Art Centre, Shanghai (Cina), 2014
- Artron (Shanghai) Arts Centre, Shanghai (Cina), 2014
- Qingpu Youth Center, Shanghai (Cina), 2012
- Spiral Gallery, Shanghai (Cina), 2011
- Kindergarten of Jiading New Town, Shanghai (Cina), 2010
- Plot 6 of Jishan Base in Jiangsu Software Park, Jiangsu (Cina), 2008
- Office building for Qingpu Business Association, Shanghai (Cina), 2005
- Xiayu Kindergarten, Shanghai (Cina), 2005
- The Dongguan Institute of Technology, Dongguan (Cina), 2004
- Tri-house, Jiangsu (Cina), 2002
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