Golden Ridge Upper-cloister
Golden Ridge Upper-cloister is located at the foot of the Great Wall at the junction of Beijing and Chengde. Strictly speaking, it is not a Zen temple, but a place for people to meditate in the context of traditional Zen and contemporary culture.
The intention of the design is first implicit in the careful site-selection. Located in a col facing the Great Wall to the southwest, the site also faces Beijing. This is similar to the positioning of Foguang Temple in Shanxi Wutai Mountain whose Great East Hall faces the valley - the direction of Chang'an City. In terms of spatial composition, the small Cloister is also analogous to Foguang Temple. In Foguang temple, people first enter a courtyard, then climb through a steep staircase to reach a high base, and finally enter the main hall and look back at the valley. In the Cloister, people would also first enter a small courtyard through the forest, then pass a space that is highly integrated with the terrains, and finally, walk out of “the mountain” and enter a transparent and delicate steel-structure Zen hall. Eventually, the view toward the valley suddenly opens, drawing the distant Great Wall inside.
The middle part of the building has a 1.6-meter-high stepping terrace, which not only simulates the geometric shape of the terraced farm cultivated by local farmers, but also tries to create a spatial meaning with the dimension of 1.6-meter, which is both close to a human body and is the typical height of half-story in a building. For such a “topographic” architecture, its typological meaning shifts between "landscape" (or "terrain") and "architecture".
Project site plan
Size: 5,500 SQ.FT
Status: Under Construction
Project Location: Shanghai, China
Team: Atelier Deshaus, Yiyang Sang