Nowadays, with the development of artificial intelligence, many fields of art have lost their original feeling. Painting, music, architecture and space have entered the age of perfectionism or styleless experimental art that eschews artificial skill and ingenuity. Commercial spaces also have emulated this sharp “form”, and the same race is on all over the world.
There is a concept called “KINTSUGI” that is rooted in the aesthetic concepts of the Orient. This is a restoration technique that uses gold lacquer to bond broken, chipped, cracked, and other damaged parts of the porcelain, and then decorates it with metal powders such as gold. It gives new life and value to substances and materials previously considered worthless. It is more important to have the space to feel the “hand” and “heart” than the sharp “form”. Emotional space is created by texture, slim shadows, textures that can only be created by hand. Instead of instantaneous “form” consumption due to trends, it is the “culture” that is passed on, and the “time” that is kept until the “future” to be loved for a long time.
▼入口-远离喧嚣都市的空间，Entrance – a space away from the bustling city © odd设计事务所
SUSHI ZEN is a place that serves food at special times, and as a space for Japanese culinary art, it invokes Japanese spatial practices in the context of Singapore to create a secluded atmosphere away from the noisy city. This is what we have been thinking about during the design process. This is a space created with the aim of feeling the texture of the “hand” and the “life” of the material, by keeping the boundaries of time and culture between the tradition and the future. This is a space with a completely different feeling than the artificial perfectionist space made with intellectualized industry.
▼数寄屋的地面铺装灵感，Floor covering inspiration from SUKIYA
The foyer is the dividing line between the noisy urban space (the external environment) and the dominant space. Taking inspiration from the store’s surroundings, the remaining floor coverings of the local neighborhood, the floor coverings of space is configured in the same paving rhythm, connecting between the exterior space and the foyer, giving the space an ambiguous and nuanced change. The style of the space is constructed according to the traditional techniques of SUKIYA house. TOKOGAMACHI still retains traces of the joints of wooden beams used in old times, and the back wall of the niche is decorated with the traditional technique of MAIHAKU, which is rarely seen in Japan today. On the other hand, transparent heterogeneous materials such as specially customized glass tiles are configured in the TSUKAISHI and SASHIISHI sections to achieve a fusion of tradition and modernity. Originally, TOKONOMA existed as a sacred place or a bounded space, but this space has been reinterpreted with a fusion of traditional and futuristic materials. Through this space, guests are greeted with a panoramic view of the main space where sushi is served.
▼玄关-舞箔材质打造的城市隐居入口，Foyer – a secluded entrance in the city made of MAIHAKU © odd设计事务所
▼玄关细节-传统木梁插合工艺，Foyer Detail – traditional wood beam Insertion craft © odd设计事务所
▼传统与现代对比-束石和差し石，Tradition and modernity – TSUKAISHI and SASHIISHI
Guests enter the space through a doorstep made of handcrafted NAGURI, and open a SHOUJI MON made of wood lattice and waterline glass. The main space contains a bar and eight auditoriums. As an important sushi table , the material used is pure hinoki with straight wood grain, and the details of hinoki can be felt everywhere, such as the ginkgo pattern embedded in the splices of the bar, and the dedicated wood strips at the intersection of the shaded corners.
▼就餐区-照明打造的光影体验，Dining area – shade and shadow experience created by illumination © odd设计事务所
The hinoki does not have much surface treatment, but through the store owner’s daily care, the texture itself is transformed into a power that conveys the sense of existence of hinoki to the customers increasingly. Hand-carved cascading glass on the skirting under the bar reflects light onto the floor like water. The ceiling is made of natural bamboo weaving in several layers to create a three-dimensional look, and the natural bamboo itself is used to cover the seams. Considering that the lighting of the bar highlights the dishes as well as the owner’s figure, the point light source is diffused to achieve the same effect as the surface light source of the hidden area. The main wall behind the guests is a screen made of traditional craft MAIHAKU, and in the background wall of owner is SAKAN SHIKKUI technique that has left a few traces of handwork. Thus, the guest’s seat as an seat of the honour in the space, expressed the owner’s respect and reverence for the guest. In addition, the decorative shelf, which sets in the background wall of owner, is equipped with black bamboo with distinctive knots and a naturally rugged board to make the display stand out in the dim environment .
▼桧木细节与吧台踢脚，Hinoki detail and Bar skirting © odd设计事务所
▼店主背景墙-采用左官漆喰工艺，Owner’s background wall – using SAKAN SHIKKUI craft © odd设计事务所
▼客人上座-金银箔背景墙面，Guest’s seat as an seat of the honour – background wall made of metal foil © odd设计事务所
▼就餐区-飾り棚，Dining area – decorative shelves © odd设计事务所
Although it is a pathway to an interior space, it is remind people of a quiet outdoor environment. In the moon-like darkness, only the stone steps were illuminated by lights set to minimum illumination. Each stone is hand-polished with inherent black texture and shading, and the natural stones give guests a sense of the material’s vitality. The SUKIYA style pillars around the corner were adopted from the pillars of old houses that had been used in the past. For pillars that are flaking and too corrupt to be used directly, they are filled with handmade glass to bring them to new life, attempting to combine materials that have passed through time with modern materials.
▼数寄屋式柱-古木柱与手工玻璃的结合，The SUKIYA style pillars – ancient wooden columns with handmade glass © odd设计事务所
▼走廊的差し石-特别定制玻璃砖，SASHIISHI in hallway – special customized glass tile © odd设计事务所
A large size of cave stone was used for the wall of the washroom. The designer selected different stones directly from the quarry before the construction, and was personally involved in the whole procedure, from cutting, polishing, to assembling. Ensure that the characteristics and use of each stone are perfectly matched.
▼洗手间，Washroom © odd设计事务所
Shadows are darker when the light is strong and lighter when the light is weak. Although light and shadow are opposites, they are at the same time closely linked.
This relationship is perhaps the same for the past and future , or between the everyday experience of a bustling city and the non-everyday experience of spending time in silence. Based on this semantic logic and through a minimal lighting approach, we elaborated all lighting effects meticulously to express their role and meaning.
▼走廊展示壁龛-侘寂的美学感受，Niches in the hallway – WABISABI aesthetics © odd设计事务所
Most of the material involved this time cannot be represented in regular drawings, so we have been in conversation with a wide variety of craftsmen. Unlike the rise of artificial intelligence, systematic construction methods, and ready-made products, these conversations seem unreasonable in the modern era, but we try to reconnect with the emotional space that has been gradually lost due to homogenized architecture. The cuisine and utensils offered in this space become one with the building, and the natural materials produced by the handwork and the resulting shadows share the space symbiotically.
▼平面图，Plan © odd设计事务所
项目名称：鮨然 SUSHI ZEN