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Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea

Photo of facade at night on new building
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

The Architects from UN Studio designed this department store with multifunctional facilities for their client, Hanwha Galleria in Cheonan, South Korea. Quite amazing piece of modern architecture is not only visually interesting from outside but also has breathtaking interior.


The building was finished and opened in December 2010, offering 66,700 m² of new public and commercial  space.

Detailed brief about architecture from the architects:

"The strategy for the building enclosure consists of creating an optical illusion. The facades feature two layers of customized aluminium extrusion profiles on top of a back layer of composite aluminium cladding. The vertical profiles of the top layer are straight; but those of the back layer are angled. This results in a wave-like appearance, which changes with the viewpoint of the spectator (Moiré effect).

On the facade a gradual transition from exterior surface to the interior plateaus accentuates the internal organisation. The lighting design was developed in parallel with the architecture and capitalizes on the double layered facade structure. To achieve the large media surface with a minimum of lighting fixtures and light spill, the specially designed and custom produced fixtures are integrated within the mullions of the outer facade layer. Invisible from the outside, these fixtures project light back onto the inner clad facade layer, in-between the vertical mullions.. At the corners of the building the low resolution media walls fluidly turn into a high resolution zone, capable of displaying information with more detail.

The interior of the Galleria Centercity derives its character from the accumulation of rounded plateaus on long columns. The repetition of curves, enhanced by coiled strip lighting in the ceilings of the platforms, gives the interior its distinctive character. This organisation has been made possible because of the complex spatial arrangement of the atrium. This central void is simple and straight in one cross- section, but oblique and jagged in the opposite cross-section. A relatively narrow central void cuts through the volume from top to base, with smaller pockets of space emanating from it."
          -UN Studio Architects


Entrance into the galleria at night with facade lighten up
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of corner facade on new building as seen from the street at sunset
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of new building as seen at night with beautiful lights on facade
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of facade during the day
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of blue lights on facade at sunset
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of white facade on the building during the day
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of interior wall lighten up in colors
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of main hall with interesting walls lighten up in colors
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photos of clean white interiors with balconies
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of white balcony inside of new gallerie
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Illustration of club interior inside of new gallerie
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Photo of office interiors in new gallerie
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of interior walls of new gallerie
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Photo of restaurant area in new gallerie
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  Christian Richters, Kim Yong-kwan

Illustration of interior balconies
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Illustration showing how interior balconies are connected
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Illustration showing part of the facade
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Illustration showing how facade works
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Illustration showing inspiration for interior balconies
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Illustration showing connection of interiors
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio

Illustration showing how facade lights work
Modern Architecture: Centercity Galleria by UN Studio, Cheonan, South Korea
©  UNStudio


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