In April 2020, only weeks into the global pandemic, EnterProjects Asia based in Thailand, received an unexpected phone enquiry from Waregem, outside Brussels, Belgium.The prospective client had a 300sqm mix-use project that needed 'balance and calm'. EPA were given what felt like a 'wellness' brief for the space, inviting nature and creativity into an industrial setting. As the curtains came down on the world, EPA came up with a clear concept to meet the client brief.
The site was an ice making factory so the design was to be fluid and liquid, like the properties of pure spring water crystallizing, incorporating raw and sustainable materials wherever possible. A highly innovative logistics program was essential if the vision was to be realized 9,000+km later at the final destination.
Relying heavily on Zoom for all client meetings & virtual site visits, the EPA team prepared for remote working. The Project Manager was operating out of Japan, the designers in Phuket & Sydney, the fabricators in Northern Thailand. The team never met. They remotely made templates, exchanged digital files and ultimately manufactured a series of sculptural elements in natural, sustainable rattan ready for Belgium.
The sculptural segments were designed in accordance with the functionality: lighting, seating and directional flow, all culminating in a large 8 meter high sculptural statement piece which illuminates the lobby and compliments the image of the brand. As an overseas project, we had to come up with a highly innovative logistics strategy: every segment was then digitally deconstructed , so the shipping containers could be optimally
filled. Like a 3d jigsaw. the segments were assembled on site in Belgium - with little to no room for error.
EPA总监基恩说：“跨越两大洲的工作面临着巨大的挑战，但从另一个层面来说，没有人知道自己或对方在做什么，在结果出来之前，整个项目都是一张白纸，而我认为最大和最好的挑战就是从零开始的。"Working across two continents always has its challenges" states Keane, "but this was on another level, nobody knew each other or exactly what the other was doing. It was a blank sheet of paper so given the result, I believe it’s the biggest and best challenge which often starts from zero''.
He also solemnly notes that "as a byproduct of this project, rattan factories were able to stay afloat during the darkest days: people were struggling to eat, supplies cut and shops closed. This project became a lifeline for many craftsmen who otherwise would have been without work. Maintaining these factories ensured local, sustainable arts & crafts production could continue"
In April 2022, with the project complete, the client & Architect finally met in person at the site. In a post pandemic economy these changing work practices have become the futureas we learn to adapt, to reinvent what it means to lead from a distance. This project is not only a pioneer of the new work philosophy but also gives a new face to the factory as an innovative & creative workspace.
Project: Enter Projects Asia
Year(s) of construction: 2020-2022
Location: Wregem, Belglum
Photographer: Edward Summer
更新日期：2022-11-25 10:22:19非常感谢 Enter Projects Asia 带来的精彩项目， 查阅更多