Monumental projects have a long history and place in architectural discourse and investigation. Of this there is no doubt, whether one looks to the Memorial of Isaac Newton or the skyscrapers which fill our cities. But they should always be taken with a grain of salt and a skeptical eye. This particular project, a proposal by the Russian firm A. Asadov Architectural Studio for the Taipei Pop Music Center, is host to a myriad of good and bad moves and ideas.

Arch2o-Taipei Pop Music Center Proposal-A. Asadov Architectural Studio (1)

Courtesy of  A. Asadov Architectural Studio

With its particularly strong metaphorical references to volcanism and the mythology of dragons, the scheme has been critiqued as playing to keenly to stereotypical Chinese symbology. But this is perhaps better described as an objection to the principle, rather than the architecture itself. The thinking is perhaps a bit weird, but the results reached are attractive and seemingly well-derived.

Arch2o-Taipei Pop Music Center Proposal-A. Asadov Architectural Studio (5)

Courtesy of  A. Asadov Architectural Studio

Circulation and the creation of place are both well accomplished. There is a certain picturesque feeling to the images of masses meandering through the graded landscapes that exist around and atop the Center. It is amongst these walks that the proposal boasts an outdoor performance area and green roof park. Within, there is a main hall which exists as a monumental ‘egg’ held within a mountainous, cavernous, stack space.

By Matt Davis

Courtesy of  A. Asadov Architectural Studio

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