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Harbin Opera House: the keys for approaching the model

3 / Case study for the digital model /

Project info: MAD Architects, Harbin, Beijing, 2014
Keywords: shape, wireframe, discretization

We envision Harbin Opera House as a cultural center of the future – a tremendous performance venue, as well as a dramatic public space that embodies the integration of human, art and the city identity, while synergistically blending with the surrounding nature,

Ma Yansong, founding principal, MAD Architects

General form: Shape

The building of Harbin Opera House seamlessly blends in with nature and the topography. The architecture of the building references the sinuous landscape of the surrounding area. The design of the general form starts from the simple geometry of conjugated circles of different diameters on the plan. The spatial connection between three dimensional circular curves creates the basic sinuous plane determining the character if the form morphology. The resulting curvilinear façade becomes the poetry of edge and surface, softness and sharpness. 

Structure: Wireframe

The three dimensional frame structure of the building may be achieved with an approach of wireframe. The main structural element is three dimensional triangles with a rigid joint which follow the sinuous plane. The structural grid for the glazing is also based on wireframe approach with a basic element of rhombus. Upon entering the grand lobby, visitors will see large transparent crystalline glass curtain wall soars over the grand lobby space with the support of a lightweight diagrid structure.

Details & Covering: Discretization

The skin of the building is composed of smooth white aluminum panels spread along the continuous façade. The discretization approach is also used for the glass pyramids elements of the curtain walls. Comprised of glass pyramids, the surface alternates between smooth and faceted, referencing the billowing snow and ice of the frigid climate. The steps of the exterior staircases leading to the roof viewing platform are also can be designed by discretizing approach.  


Published by Nadia


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