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Time Tunnel in a mirror – Nax Architects implements concept for Shanghai Chicmax Cosmetics.
Tea cosmetics brand Cosmetea turns the previous definition of cosmetics on its head by combining tea with trendy cosmetics. It uses Tea Beauty Science to create a modern fashion aesthetic based on natural Eastern sensibilities.
Nax Architects was commissioned to design the pop-up store for the Cosmetea brand in Shanghai. The store represents the philosophy of relationships between existing environments and future architecture. It also promotes the creative and sustainable development of the brand.
“Our design brief involved transforming a dumpling shop on the corner of Yuyuan Road into a pop-up store, as well as creating a brand new scene that fits the lifestyle of the city’s residents and shares Cosmetea’s exclusive brand philosophy with the world,” explains Lina Chan from the design firm.
“We found inspiration for our theme in the Cosmetea logo,” says Lina Chan. This logo is based on the simplified image of a fairness cup and resembles a pendulum with a time imprint, implying the inner desire of cosmetics users to “hold on to time”. The pendulum image of the logo is internalised as a design language and begins with the façade being chiselled out into a cave that expands into a nine-square-metre interior space, creating endless possibilities within the limited spatial scale.
The time tunnel
The “time tunnel” consists of a stainless steel mirror with strings of LED lights that, in combination with a large window, incorporates urban and natural landscapes and blurs the boundaries between inside and outside. The hollow layer has pallets inserted into customised slots in a sequence based on the principles of peg structures. The wall cabinet can be used for product display and storage and its surfaces are painted red to match the brand’s main colour scheme.
Wormhole that transcends time and space
As visitors enter and walk on the glass floor, they come across a series of circles, each circle representing a period of the past. There are also drawers where visitors can rummage to look for old objects. The circular tunnel is like a wormhole that transcends time and space, allowing people to briefly escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Trendy meeting point
The project is located on Yuyuan Road, a hundred-year-old street that has undergone many changes. The street represents the essence of Shanghai’s history and culture and has established itself as Shanghai’s trendy meeting place.
During the day it is a very friendly and shared space with a childlike sense of wonder. When night falls, it is more like an urban lighthouse. Based on cutting-edge concepts, the spatial experimentation and behavioural experience of this project help deepen the brand’s impression on its customers while rethinking the relationship between the city, nature and people.
Planning office: Nax Architects
Design team: Lina Chan, Yiting Ma, Jo Jiao
Client: Shanghai Chicmax Cosmetics Co.
Photos: Raitt Liu