Designer Li Yizhong is renowned at creating humanistic qualities in his creations, where free spirit and the arts and humanities combine with strategic thinking to create the ultimate beauty throughout his spaces. In his view, true freedom is the integration of culture, spirit, and art, which shapes a space allowing people to experience both Chinese and Western elements, and touches the human heart. Weinan Vanke V-Club was created as a symbol of the city’s culture and memory, whereby the interior design was fully conceived by a design team led by Li Yizhong. He says, “As I walk along the old streets of Weinan City, the setting sun shines on the eaves of the ancient buildings, the soft light and shadow forming a delightful contrast to the sculptural buildings. The scene integrating history, culture, art and life deeply touches my heart, encouraging me to create a cultural name card for the city known as the ‘Root of China’”. Li's design was inspired by the wooden eave structure of local ancient buildings, the shadow puppets, the black pottery ink, etc, which were reinterpreted and recombined through strategic thinking and a modern art language, to create a simple and elegant space. It not only presents the collision between the old and the new, but also integrates the spirit of freedom and modernity to remind locals of old memories.
Upon entering, a square shaped art exhibition space welcomes visitors with an open gesture. The designer has broken away from restrained thinking and conventional techniques, drawing inspiration from the wooden eave structure, deconstructing and refining the classic elements to create an attractive ceiling and creating artistic tension. The blue sculpture “Eaves Combination'', located in the center of the space and condensing the artistic atmosphere, was created by artist Zhang Qinu. This resonates with the eave elements of ancient buildings and creates a cultural collision between the old and the new, to provide a rich spatial experience.
Meanwhile, undulating topography and tall buildings are directly “constructed” on the ground, to present a three-dimensional visual effect and blend into the curved LED wall behind. As visitors move forward, they will pass through a long, clean aisle to reach other functional areas. Digital technology has been employed with an LED screen wall to interact with people - as one moves forward slowly, there will be "ripples" appearing on the wall, affecting the space with a dreamlike quality.
The lamps in the bar have been carefully selected and symmetrically arranged to reinforce the artistic atmosphere. An entire row of bookshelves display hundreds of books as well as some elements that blend ancient and modern cultures - such as the paintings hanging under the eaves of ancient buildings, the clear-textured porcelain, the dim paper wall lamps, etc. all work together to enhance the space with the cultural atmosphere of books and classic objects. The book bar serves as a space for reading, communication and relaxation. Long tables, scattered seats and enclosed sofa areas all provide a variety of choices, enabling a space for every purpose.
Throughout the space of Weinan Vanke V-Club, the design shuttles freely between the old and the new. In the banquet hall, for example, a group of oil paintings by the modern artist Gui Rongbiao entitled “Shadows and Dreams” present Weinan’s shadow plays and show the charm of traditional culture. Modern oil paintings have endowed this ancient art form with new interpretation, which not only makes the space more memorable, but also inspires visitors to think more. For Li, art is free and a supreme spiritual wealth. With rapid urbanisation accelerating today’s world, design should combine art with form to remind people of old memories and strike a responsive chord in their hearts. Only in this way can art add value to space and life.
Therefore, on the second floor, the space is designed in a simple, elegant style, whose quiet and artistic atmosphere is ideal for deep communication and art appreciation. The reception area, meanwhile, is dominated in beige hues and decorated with elegant log-coloured marble tables. Symmetrical wall-mounted calligraphy works and the flourishing pine tree enhance the cultural atmosphere of the space. The beauty in motion continues like a landscape painting. Next to the French windows stands a black pottery sculpture, which draws inspiration from the Weihe River and records the long history of the land. This also symbolises the flourishing Chinese civilization. Concludes Li succinctly, “We hope to present a dynamic, graceful and unique oriental style in this urban living room, which not only looks graceful but is also stately.” Through the design of Li Yizhong & Associates, Weinan Vanke V-Club is not only an ordinary sales centre, but also an urban living room, an art gallery and a new spiritual fortress for Weinan’s residents.