MAD Architects just completed the Huangshan Mountain Village, a nature-inspired project that mimics the curves of China’s most beautiful mountains in a UNESCO World Heritage site. Located on a ridge, the developments comprise ten unique buildings that rise like individual peaks overlooking Taiping Lake. The architects sought to create new type of village landscape “where architecture becomes nature, and nature dissolves into architecture.”
The Huangshan Mountain Village was created as part of a larger tourism masterplan for Huangshan Taiping Lake, a landscape rich in greenery, granite peaks, and historical significance. To respect the local topography, the architects designed each building with undulating lines that respond to the mountainous terrain and nearby terraced tea fields. Each structure juts out from the forest canopy like craggy granite mountains sculpted by the natural forces of wind and water. Spacious balconies and large strips of glazing bring the outdoors in.
“The impression we have of Taiping Lake in Huangshan is vague: each visit to this place yields different views, different impressions,” said Founder Ma Yansong. “It is a bit mysterious, like ancient Shanshui landscape paintings that are never based on realism, but rather, the imagination. This inexplicable feeling is always poetic; it is obscure and indistinct. This is the basic idea: we hope that residents will not just look at the scenery, but see themselves in relation to this environment, attention that is brought inward. In observing oneself, one perhaps begins to notice a different self than the one present in the city.”
Images © Laurian Ghinitoiu