From arch out loud's Korean DMZ Underground Bath House ideas competition, we're taking a closer look at the winning entry, “Crossing Parallels” by STUDIO M.R.D.O. & Studio LaM (Jinhyun Jun, Minkyung Song, and Kangil Ji). The global competition challenged designers to explore the idea of building a public underground bath house that responds to the geopolitical conditions of the highly tensioned 38th Parallel, a.k.a. the Demilitarized Zone between North Korea and South Korea.
The New York-based STUDIO M.R.D.O. & Studio LaM team crafted a poetic narrative in “Crossing Parallels”, a double helix-shaped structure that presents the bath house as a metaphorical theater.
The designers shared more details about their entry with Bustler. Scroll down for a look.
Project description: “38th Parallel, Checkpoint/Changing Room, and Entrance to Double Helix Ramp (Scene 1-3): Visitors from each side approach the theater by walking along the 38th parallel: approach towards a same point on the line, become closer, but turn to opposite directions, and enter the theater (scene 1).”
“After passing by the checkpoint and the changing room (scene 2), they confront again, but with distance (scene 3).”
“Double Helix Ramp as Stage and Audience (Scenes 4-7): While walking down the double helix ramp, visitors experience series of emotional/physical merging and diverging, moments of crossing uncrossable lines (projected 38th parallel line on the ramp), while being more away from each other.”
“Here, visitors become actors and audience at the same time; each observe each other’s feelings, while passing through layers of tension and relaxation: a process of accumulating ambivalent communal emotions.”
“Communal Pool (Scene 8) Upon reaching communal pool, all emotions experienced before are liquefied into water; debris of emotions brought by actors / audiences compose pools of emotions. Now, a performance without playwright is played by visitors’ spontaneous conversations, and by wave in the emotional pool.”
Find project diagrams in the image gallery below. In case you missed them, you can find the runners-up entries here.
Image credit: STUDIO M.R.D.O. & Studio LaM.
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