China : Smriti Curtilage Villa. Suzhou, Jiangsu

 Modern Chinese villa with modernist solutions and oriental philosophy

Architects : T.K. Chu Design  
Principal designer : T.K. Chu
Photos  ©  Ting Wang

Villa Smriti Curtilage is located in the Old City of Suzhou, next to the unique 17th century 
Garden of Retreat for Couples (Ŏu Yuán), which was declared a UNESCO World Heritage
 Site in 2000 and soaks up many traces of the city's rich history. As a representative of
 the classical Suzhou garden, Ŏu Yuán garden is known for its cultural style and romantic
 poetry. The garden symbolizes the inclusive relationship that inspired the design of
 Villa Smriti Curtilage. For designers, the 1,090 square meter Smriti Curtilage Villa
 represents a unique opportunity to combine nature, architecture, art, objects
 and people in a harmonious order. Set in a secluded location surrounded
 by tranquil nature, with a green backyard, the residence is a classic
 microcosm  of  Suzhou  gardens. 

Every room at Villa Smriti Curtilage on the ground floor has a view of the Zen garden. 
Panoramic windows destroy the relationship between the interior and exterior, creating 
a feeling of comfort and connection with the surrounding nature. Walking up to the sliding
 glass doors is like stepping into a private zen world. Design furniture, shaped like trees 
and stones, is placed asymmetrically and naturally. An artistic exploration of the duality
 beloved by the Chinese can be seen in the T. K. Chu Design project: a concept hard
 to decipher by Westerners becomes more acceptable in the form of verticality
 and linearity, in irregularities and angularities - the marble is finely cut, the
 corridor is replete with geometric shapes, stones and trees that look raw -
 duality is united inside the residence, but separated by windows.

In the floor, in the center of the living room, there is a hole through which light 
enters the two underground floors. Thanks to the Inner Temple located in the lower
 level, the underground space acquires a spiritual meaning. In addition, the underground
 floors also house a home theatre, wine cellar, bar and art collection. The designers modernize
 the space with a staircase that looks more like an intricate vertical sculpture and the abstract
 sculpture "Coupling" (PoLin Yang), believing that the complexity and richness of
 spatial  solutions  are  the  gateway  to  awaken  emotions.

Thanks to the efforts of the design team, the villa forms a horizontal coordinate
 axis of "harmony between man and nature" and a vertical "balance of the inner and
 outer worlds." For T. K. Chu Design, design is the art of the possible. The designer creates
 a "possible space" based on the client's desire from countless possibilities, and in each case 
the design is a balanced reunion of both visions. The design concept is based on the 
externalization of traditional Chinese philosophy: people display their modest 
behavior in an attempt to show reverence for Mother Nature and achieve
 oneness with nature. Therefore, the elements of nature are scattered 
literally  everywhere  in  space.

Smriti Curtilage Villa on YouTube


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