The Wall

Children’s Teaching Restaurant

This project was built in 2019 by AHO's Scarcity and Creativity Studio (SCS) and Architecture School of Tianjin University. It is located in Xiamutang village, Ji'an city, Jiangxi province, China. To revitalize the local village, students from AHO and Tianjin university built a children's teaching restaurant for Xiamutang.

Image work detail

The site is located at a narrow slope between houses and farmland in Xiamutang village. We choose to use parallel walls along the slope facing the farmland to settle functions of the building: kitchen, dining room and storage. Since this project was designed and built by students, we chose more feasible structures and materials. These walls are made of hollow blocks to facilitate students to pour reinforced concrete into them. The roof structure is "crossed" by wood, creating a roof with a central gutter and a double skylight along each roof. The walls are rendered with a distinctive "Chinese" red. We want to create a building that blends into the rural environment and evokes rural vitality.

The explosive growth of China has been driven by a massive migration of people from the countryside to the cities, which has led to sharp depopulation in the countryside. At present, China is losing about 300 villages a day, the government is looking for a rural development model that can protect rural life, which is seen as the foundation of traditional Chinese culture and values. Increasing affluence has allowed more and more Chinese to spend their holidays and travel at rural village. Attractive and well-equipped villages are expected to find new sources of income from tourism. We designed a special route between the parallel walls and the outside environment so that the building has better connectivity and children can play freely between the building and the farmland. The interior furniture is made of local wood, and the scale of the furniture conforms to the scale of children, which is convenient for parent-child cooking courses. In order to allow us to enjoy the scenery while eating, we opened a wide window on the wall facing the open farmland. Finally, the special structure of the roof allows the interior to enjoy the soft outdoor light, working together with the red walls to form a warm cooking and dining atmosphere. After the project was completed, the village came alive. During the holidays, many parents from surrounding cities bring their children to visit and play here. They spoke highly of the culinary courses and the experience the building gave them. More and more people know and come here to experience it, which brings more income to the village and stimulates its vitality. We believe that this is a very effective way to activate the vitality of Chinese villages, and we are happy to see more innovative ideas to help Chinese villages become active.