Red Diamond by Chiasmus Partners

Architects Chiasmus Partners have converted a former factory into a dance centre and theatre in the Dongcheng district of Bejing, China.

The project, named Red Diamond, involved covering the exterior of the existing building with a faceted shell made of evenly-spaced steel tubing.

Elements of the original building such as the front door remain in place.

The area in front of the main building is to be used as an open-air performance space.

A separate white, box-like structure accommodates a bar and seating overlooking this courtyard.

Spaces in the main building include a performance hall and practice studio.

Here's some information from the architects:


Red Diamond

Located in the historic DongCheng district of Beijing, the project calls for a conversion of old factory complex into a dance center with a performance hall, a practice hall and a saloon.

With the intention to emphasize the public character of the new dance center, the concept was to make the courtyard an outdoor “theater” – a public space that would revitalize the complex, the hutong and its neighborhood.

By wrapping the old factory building with evenly-spaced-out steel tubing, the facade of the performance hall was perceived as a theater stage.

Above: the original building

The old white door in the middle was kept and untouched, telling the history of the building’s transformation.

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The white floating box opposite to the performance hall is a saloon which was perceived as box seats overlooking the stage on the other side.

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At the same time, people in saloon are also being seen upon entering the complex.

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There is a blurred boundary between stage and seats.  The relationship between seeing and being seen are constantly reversed.

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Architect: Chiasmus Partners
Principal Architect: James Wei Ke, Hyunho Lee
Project Team: Oscar Ko, Gu Yun Duan, Feng Bo
Client: Beijing Modern Dance Company
Location: Beijing, China
Program: Performance Hall, Practice Hall, Saloon
Project years: 2008-2009
Photographer: Chiasmus, Jenny Hung

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