MAD Studios have been in the spotlight recently with steady progress being made for ‘The Absolute Towers’ project in Mississauga, Canada. The project sprung forth due to Mississauga seeking a new identity for their city. The City of Mississauga wanted a residential landmark that would provide an emotional connection to the landscape. ‘The Absolute Towers’ project is a flagship for MAD Studio; demonstrating their ability to design beautiful, sculptural buildings.
“Our design forsakes the simplification principle of modernism. In fact, it expresses a higher level of complexity and diversity of modern society through multiple approaches. In the meantime, it caters to (ambiguous) social needs at multiple levels.In our design, a continuous balcony surrounds the whole building, eliminating the vertical barriers that are traditionally used in high rise architecture. The entire building rotates by different degrees at different levels, corresponding with the surrounding scenery. Our aim is to provide 360 degree views, to awaken the city dweller’s appreciation of nature, and to get them in touch with the sunlight and the wind.” Source: MAD Studios.
MAD Studios, based in Beijing, are known internationally for their work and innovative projects. Their concepts combine a unique design philosophy and sophistication that make use of advanced technology, exploring contemporary architecture that is current for today’s China. MAD Studios consistently produce work that stands out and get’s noticed.
“The challenge of this project was to create an architectural expression that could respond to this natural context. The structure appears to ascend from the lake itself. A continuous, reflective surface rises up out of the water, becoming first the roof and then the walls of the house. This surface blurs the distinction between solid and liquid states, between building and environment.” Source
“This project is located on a vast and beautiful landscape in the Ulanbutong district of Inner Mongolia, in which eight weekend and holiday homes will be created, to accommodate visitors from the city seeking a rural retreat. Covered in green grass in the summer, and white snow in the winter, the environment presents an unusual challenge: to design something that can fit seamlessly in two different landscapes.” Source
“Changhsa Culture Park is located at the end point of the waterfront of Changsha City. The challenge of this project was to create a new cultural centre for the city, which can maintain the link between the waterfront and the urban context behind it. Changsha Culture Park is conceived as a man-made, floating platform connecting the three cultural facilities of the site – music hall, museum and library – into one fluid, integrated object. The park will be more than just a landmark cultural building: it is designed as an open public space, which can be freely accessed by the local population.” Source
Located in Denmark, this 269 sqm residential project is currently still in progress.
At the back of the Copenhagen Central Station there is a void, which MAD proposes becomes a new public space. “The hole will be covered, but with a series of sculptural organic openings which still allow light and air into the ground level below. This new space will become an attractive, intricate public space, which could be used as an art park or outdoor gallery space for Copenhagen.” Source
Beijing’s future beyond 2008 needs to be considered, and they require a vision for their city that will take them beyond their short term problems.
“Beijing 2050 is such a vision, a direction that the city can set itself. Informed by an awareness of development in the past, we have created a set of projects that will respond to the challenges Beijing will face tomorrow. Our aim is not to criticize the current city, but to propose something even better.” Source
I truly admire the conceptual and built work of MAD Studio which embrases the advent of a new era. Their work reflects the office’s architectural exploration of contemporary art and the transformation of lifestyle and multimedia formats in contemporary Chinese cities.