Designers 51N4E transformed a massive disused textile factory in Kortrijk into a beautiful yellow-brick art studio in the heart of this Belgian city. Located on Buda Island, the new Buda Art Center features a large pentagonal void that plays host to a staircase linking the studio and exhibition center's four levels. And just about every inch of this renovated 4,240-square-meter space is absolutely drenched in natural light.
Two main interventions allowed 51N4E to transform the dinky old building into a contemporary marvel that now takes up a big chunk of a large city block. First they cut out a giant pentagonal “void” from the nucleus of the building, in order to flood the whole building with daylight – an energy-saving strategy that is also deeply aesthetically pleasing.
The center of the building houses laboratory and studio space, music venues and a rooftop terrace, all of which are connected by a central staircase, while a new open pavilion at the street level leads visitors into the lower entrance – like a giant antechamber. Lastly, the entire building is clad in beautiful yellow brick that was harvested from the building’s original interior.
Photos © Filip Dujardin and Paul Steinbrück