Martin Goya X PIG, a regenerated space for artists


Qi Shuoqian,

Hangzhou, China,


Wood, Metal, Stone,

Refurbishment, Interior Design,

The PIG DESIGN studio, based in China, has co-created an art space for the Martin Goya Business art platform, founded by artist Cheng Ran: the Martin Goya.Pig in Hangzhou. An independent art space dedicated to supporting young local artists, while also encouraging spontaneous public activities.

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Martin Goya X PIG, a regenerated space for artists
To support artists, we need dedicated spaces where they can express themselves and develop their art. One such space is Martin Goya.Pig, in the Xiangshan Art Commune, in the Xihu district, in Hangzhou, the metropolis and capital of Zhejiang. Here, the Martin Goya Business art platform founded by artist Cheng Ran, invited PIG DESIGN, led by Li Wenqiang, to co-create a new artistic space. Martin Goya.Pig is an independent art space designed to support young local artists, but also aimed at citizens. Everything is born within a pre-existing structure whose reuse is part of the post-pandemic logic for a renewed cultural development, obviously with a very tight budget that, as often happens, has favoured the search for innovative and sustainable solutions.
Well aware of the "too much of a good thing" concept, the creative minds of the PIG DESIGN studio have proposed a space that makes an impression thanks to its "unsophisticated and rustic wilderness", as the designers write in a press note. Thanks to the sloping ground on which the pre-existing building is inserted, where the atelier was built, the structure develops over two floors. PIG DESIGN has maintained the basic backbone of the existing building, introducing "regenerated" structural elements in this 270-square-metre empty space. Everything aims to allow maximum freedom of expression to those who come to practice their art in this space.
Among the materials used, common recycled ones take on a leading role: dry wood, stones, canvas and metal have been recombined in this project, which embodies the reflection on the ever-changing commercial civilisation that becomes a source of inspiration. Another rather interesting element is the reuse of a wear-resistant and waterproof canvas wrapped around the façades of the building and the interior wall surfaces, which was stitched and fixed using staple guns during the regeneration of the structure, intervention that only required one month to complete. The ceiling is finished with a simple, environment-friendly water-based paint, while the floor is paved with black gravel and stone slabs that help blur the boundary between inside and outside. In addition, recycled metal rods form a triangular installation, highlighting the visual identity of the entrance leading to the "bird nest". The interiors, furnished with recycled and adapted objects, 3D printed elements and simple colours, follow a logic of providing maximum freedom for users, while still being the result of a meticulous design.
The visual impact of Martin Goya.Pig is guaranteed precisely by these choices dictated by the desire to limit the economic and environmental impact of the intervention, regenerating an old space that once again finds a daily purpose. 
The new art space, in fact, integrates multiple functions such as gallery, tea room and salon, while also exploring new possibilities for combining art and commerce. Artistic events are regularly organised here, offering networking opportunities and providing young artists with a free platform that goes far beyond the conventional art gallery system. The café that we find inside Martin Goya.Pig helps to raise funds to support the operation of this intervention, a challenge that, as the designers explain, "leaves more future possibilities for the space, which sets an example for spatial creation in the post-pandemic era."

Christiane Bürklein

Project: PIG DESIGN (pigdesign.art)
Chief designer: Li Wenqiang
Design team: Liu Chao, Zhao Lili, Yang Zhiwei, Yan Junjun, Qian Mengmeng Location: Hangzhou, China
Location: Hangzhou, China
Year: 2021
Photography: Qi Shuoqian
Video: Martin Goya X PIG

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