In the leafy fronds of Beijing’s Lido Garden is the latest outlet of design retailer Tales. Conceptualised by Venetian architect Luca Nichetto following an encounter with the company at the Milan Euroluce Exhibition in April, the Tales Pavilion is now open for business following a swift design and build challenge.
A statement from Nichetto & Partners reads: “The architectural design is Nichetto’s depiction of the young and avant-garde Tales, which, much like grass is free, natural, and full of life with a grand desire of growing.” The greenery referred to by the firm takes the form of 1,200 brass tubes which encase the pavilion like a wall of grass blades.
Over time, the nature of this material means that the finish of the tubes will change as it reacts with the weather, ‘camouflaging’ the entire structure into its parkland setting. The organic nature of this design reaches inside the pavilion walls to the warm wooden interior.
Lit by a blend of natural light which streams through large boxy windows and skylights, and carefully chosen artificial lamps, the interior décor incorporates both natural and man-made elements. Elm wood has been recycled from aging houses in Hebei Provice to line the walls of the central reception, offset by white plaster and exposed brickwork on the first floor. The floor of the bathroom is lined with brightly-hued, mismatched Moroccan tiles, made by hand.
Two staircases offer contrasting properties in relation to their position in the pavilion: the staircase between the first two floors purposely downgrades the light to create an air of mystery and curiosity; while the staircase that leads to the roof level is lit by sunlight to give an open feel.
The core use of the building is as an exhibition space for design retailer Tales. Inspired by Chinese tangram puzzles, Nichetto & Partners has created a highly flexible interior space whereby a variety of triangular displays can be separated, moved and combined to devise a range of exhibition frameworks. This method has been continued on the accessible roof with adaptable concrete furniture.
Nichetto & Partners concludes: “The goal of the Tales Pavilion is to establish itself as a design stage of international significance. The pavilion will become a dynamic and vibrant new complex for excellence in design. Tales’ philosophy of ‘story-telling design’, in unison with its acute attention in selecting collaborators and brands, perfectly suited Nichetto’s innovative approach to design and vice versa.”