城市是有密码的。这样的密码，并不是固定的，或许就在某个凝视的瞬间，在某个貌似普通的事物上，或是那些貌似微不足道的城市褶皱里。There’s a code to every city. The code isn’t always the same. It hides in a random glance, on something seemingly ordinary, or in a most often ignored street corner.
Wukang Road, located in the heart of Shanghai, is a local cultural and historical landmark. It’s home to more than 30 celebrity residences and the Wukang Building, an apartment, designed by Hugarian architect Ladislav Hudec, reminiscent of the Flatiron Building in New York City. Walking down the street, you can feel what makes Shanghai so unique and charming-it offers a natural blend of everyday activities, cultural events, and the metropolitan lifestyle.
At the beginning of this year, the two founders of the Offhand Practice team, Yuan Yuan and Nie Xuan, were commissioned to remodel and upgrade the building that housed the Xiaozhuo Boutique in the center of the Wukang Road. The Xiaozhuo Lane, as an extension of its surroundings, brings Wukang Road into the No. 368 building. Upon entering the building, you are greeted by radiant yet smooth greens that will lead you on a winding path onto a fashion experience that says no to pinch-waist items.
The interior space doesn’t have sufficient natural light coming in. OUI then installed the ELFIN series spotlights on the ceiling to illuminate the space. The spotlights also function as a guide and generate a mysterious ambiance for every visitor. OUI strove to enhance the feeling of adventure by carefully positioning the angles of the spotlights.
Yet, the true gift of the space will not reveal itself until visitors have walked down the enigmatic corridor. The space suddenly opens up after a long and narrow walk - leading people into the back garden that looks like a green maze. It’s one of the popular photo-ops on Wukang Road now. The color, soothing green, the material, coarse concrete, and the shape, smooth curves, clash with each other yet coexist in a strange harmony. The mirror at the end of the maze further lengthens the green path and blurs the boundary between fantasy and reality.
From the second floor up, the three-story-space on the south side of building has been turned into a display area for Xiaozhuo to explore its design philosophy. The extraordinary floor to floor height introduces enough natural light into the room and creates a flow among the fragmented interior spaces. OUI added the RADIATE and MASS series that seamlessly blended in with the natural light, further strengthening the room’s spiritual atmosphere. The skylight on first floor becomes an interesting addition to the space.
Materials and textures have always been the Offhand team’s area of interest and they have devoted a large portion of their time and energy into the crafting of details in these two respects. The combination of spaces that serve different functions coincides with the complex relationship between streets and buildings. Everywhere in this building, you can find or feel aspects of Shanghai, thanks to the designer’s genius. As for OUI, what we enjoyed the most about this project is making the carefully designed space uniquely Shanghai. This project’s theme aligns well with OUI’s motto of creating a lifestyle of light.
Pay attention to the use of space, be proficient in lighting to create an indoor atmosphere, and integrate modern techniques and fitting elements into each design space.