Sound Waves

Sound Waves

Bejing, China

CLIENT Beijing Garden Expo / STATUS Under Construction / DESIGN TEAM Balmori Associates 

Sound Waves embodies the feelings triggered by viewing nature as depicted in Chinese landscape painting, reproducing the appearance of the magical Guilin’s mountains of the Li River. Bands of planting, like three-dimensional brushstrokes, play on the conventional reading of topographic contours, not connecting points of equal elevation, but instead mapping areas of similar conditions.

To capture over 140 different site conditions, Balmori constructed a parametric computational model of the garden that adapts to and aligns with transient information flows. Advanced programming methodologies allow the model to analyze year-round natural conditions of a particular area of the site, including sun hours per day, slope conditions, altitude, and wind exposure. The model performs by subdividing the site into a fine grid of points, which are then analyzed individually.

The experience is shaped by various paths that ascend and descend through the garden, hovering above and cutting through the site to offer perspectives to the hills and over the valleys. Balmori’s selection of plants builds upon the goals of the Expo with a focus on seasonal colors, textures, smells, and capacity to clean the city’s polluted air.