Kukje Gallery—K3, Seoul, South Korea, 2012

For Kukje Gallery in Seoul, SOIL has developed a master plan of the gallery’s “art campus” in the historic urban fabric of Sogyeok-dong, a lowrise area in the northern part of Seoul. Small alleyways and courtyard houses characterize this neighborhood, which is currently being infiltrated by newly constructed galleries, boutiques and coffee shops. One of the newly planned buildings within the master plan is a gallery. The structure is a single-story, clear-span art space. The ground floor will be used for large installations, performances and other functions, while the two sublevel floors house a sales room, a lecture space and storage areas. Circulation is pushed out to the edge of the building to maintain the pure geometry of the box. A perimeter skylight  admits natural light.

Considering the clear diagrammatic geometry of the white cube too rigid within the historic fabric, the building is enveloped in a permanent “nebula”—a pliable chainmail veil. The stainless steel mesh produces a layer of diffusion in front of the actual building mass, through a combination of multidirectional reflection, openness, and the moiré pattern generated through interplay of its shadows. An additional quality of the material is that it can stretch, thus avoiding creasing. It is strong yet pliable, and can easily wrap around crude geometries. Together with Front Inc., SOIL has developed, engineered and fabricated this one-off façade.

Kukje Gallery

Seoul, South Korea

Gallery, theater, meeting room, art storage

1.500 m² / 16,000 sf

Completed April 2012

Florian Idenburg, Jing Liu, Ilias Papageorgiou, Iannis Kandyliaris, Cheon-Kang Park, Sooran Kim

Local Architect: Jong-Ga Architects
Structural Engineer: Dong Yang Engineering
Mechanical Engineer: G.K Technology
Facade: Front Inc.

2011 AIA NY Design Awards

Image credits
Photography: Iwan Baan
Video: SOIL

Kukje Gallery—K3
Kukje Gallery—K3
Kukje Gallery—K3
Kukje Gallery—K3, east entrance
Kukje Gallery—K3, context
Kukje Gallery—K3, mesh detail
Kukje Gallery—K3, exterior view
Kukje Gallery—K3, parapet detail
Kukje Gallery—K3, gallery view
Kukje Gallery—K3, gallery view
Kukje Gallery—K3, theater
Kukje Gallery—K3, meeting room
Kukje Gallery—K3, site plan
Kukje Gallery—K3, ground floor plan
Kukje Gallery—K3, basement plan
Kukje Gallery—K3, section