- Red Planet, 100architects’ playground in Shanghai
100architects, founded in 2013 by Marcial Jesus (Chile) and Javier Gonzalez (Spain) and based in Shanghai, China, is a studio working in the field of architecture in a sort of unconventional way, as it does not do buildings but creates urban interventions and street architecture. This team combines place making, street art, urban design and landscaping. Its works are both ephemeral and permanent architectures, realised in public spaces to foster interaction between their users, and are designed to encourage the occurrence of social dynamics.
These are the bases on which their latest project, Red Planet, was created: it is a playground and multi-purpose space characterised by a bright red colour that was realised inside Life Hub @ Daning, a 250,000 sq. m mixed use development with a 110,000 sq. m shopping mall. Life Hub @ Daning is one of the most loved shopping centres in Shanghai, an open-air retail street that combines shopping with the pleasure of going for a walk.
The marketing team requested from the architects something innovative and unexpected, beyond any typical decorative installation, that would attract kids and adults alike to come and use this place, that would therefore become a space where to stop and stay to spend some quality time interacting with other users, kids and families. The creatives of 100architects responded to this request for a place making with a surreal approach, breaking the conventional rules of perception, i.e. of what is already conceived as reality, in order to trigger the kids’ imagination and creativity and to let them live in full a colourful experience.
Indeed, Red Planet is based on the image of the basketball field, whose typical bright red colour is also applied to the existing urban furniture, and whose narrative is enhanced by the basket itself, that hosts LED lights. All these features give life to a surreal playground with an artificial topography provided with elements perfect for playing, climbing, or sitting, and allowing the kids to use their fantasy to colonise and use the space in a thousand different and unexpected ways.
The intervention by 100architects in the urban environment of the shopping mall creates an entirely new world, a “red planet” devoted to playing that can be explored, an attraction for the entire community that, starting from the typical image of the basketball field, fosters creativity as well as the social dynamics generated by the interactions between users.
Project name: Red Planet
Design team: Marcial Jesus, Javier Gonzalez, Eunice Tsa
Client: Life Hub @ Daning, (Chongbang Group)
Location: Daning Road, Jin’An District, Shanghai, China
Built area: 245m2
Completion: June 2017
Photographer: Amey Kandalgaonkar