Daeyang Gallery and House
Steven Holl Architects

July 02, 2012 /

Seoul, South Korea

Photo: Iwan Baan

The private gallery and house is sited in the hills of the Kangbuk section of Seoul, Korea.

The basic geometry of the building is inspired by a 1967 sketch for a music score by the composer Istvan Anhalt, "Symphony of Modules," which was discovered in a book by John Cage titled "Notations."

Three pavilions; one for entry, one residence, and one event space, appear to push upward from a continuous gallery level below. A sheet of water establishes the plane of reference from above and below.

Photo: Iwan Baan

After passing through a bamboo formed garden wall at the entry court, ascending steps into the entry pavilion bring the viewer at elbow height with the unifying sheet of water. Here, at the center of this place is an inner feeling with the sky, water, vegetation and the reddened patina of the copper walls all reflected in different ways.
Photo: Iwan Baan

The roof plan is imprinted in the exposed concrete wall by the water fountain.

The red and charcoal stained wood interiors of the pavilions are activated by skylight strips of clear glass that are cut into the roof. Sunlight turns and bends around the inner spaces, animating them with the changing light of each season and throughout the day. Like a cesura in music, strips of glass lenses in the base of the pool give a moment of pause, breaking through the surface to bring dappled light to the white plaster walls and white granite floor of the gallery below.

Photo: Iwan Baan

Photo: Inho Lee

Photo: Iwan Baan

The Daeyang Gallery and House is heated and cooled with geothermal wells.

Sketch courtesy Steven Holl Architects

Sketch courtesy Steven Holl Architects

Sketch courtesy Steven Holl Architects

Sketch courtesy Steven Holl Architects

Drawing courtesy Steven Holl ArchitectsGallery Level Plan

Drawing courtesy Steven Holl ArchitectsPavilion Level Plan

Drawing courtesy Steven Holl ArchitectsRoof Plan

Drawing courtesy Steven Holl ArchitectsSections

Facts about Daeyang Gallery and House

Site area:

5,774 ft2
Floor area: 10,703 ft2

Steven Holl Architects

Design architect:

Steven Holl

Associate in charge:

JongSeo Lee

Project team:

Annette Goderbauer
Chris McVoy
Francesco Bartolozzi
Marcus Carter
Nick Gelpi
Jackie Luk,
Fiorenza Matteoni
Rashid Satti
Dimitra Tsachrelia

Local architect:

E.rae Architects
Inho Lee
Minhee Chung
Hyoungil Kim

Structural Engineer:

SQ Engineering

Mechanical Engineer:

Buksung HVAC+R Engineering

Lighting Consultant:

L'Observatoire International

General Contractor:


Last updated: December 19, 2013

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