A little light relief

Friday 27 Jul 2012

Local design studio enlivens static facade with colourful panels in nature-inspired relief

Melbourne design practice studio 505 has recently seen their highly textured façade for a Brisbane shopping centre come to life. The 4,000 sq m Wintergarden Façade is a complex new steel screening system on the front of a thriving retail hub and looks to engage visitors with its constantly shifting appearance.

A wide palette of hues and shapes challenged the team at studio 505 who developed their knowledge of screen geometry, cutting, folding and panelising specifically for this project. The design itself is inspired by nature, retaining a coherent identity for the shopping mall.

studio 505 explains: “Our response to this brief was to build upon the deep cultural collateral and public good will that resides in the site and the name ‘Wintergarden’ and create a radically experiential composition, a complex and beautiful study of nature, geometry and layering that communicates the rich diversity of life. It is not an ‘illustration’ of nature nor is it merely an abstract pattern. The depth of engagement with these facades lies within this irresolvable ambiguity.”

While the swirling print of the façade is aesthetically pleasing in its own right, what really sets the Wintergarden Façade apart from neighbouring buildings is the interplay of light and shadow. The folds and undulations in the panelling cast intricate patterns on the interior space in different dimensions and intensities as the seasons change and the Sun shifts on its path across the sky. At night, low resolution integrated lighting systems within the pattern illuminate the façade for the enjoyment of passers-by.

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