on the occasion of the inaugural chicago architecture biennial, aranda\lasch has unveiled plans for a contemporary arts complex in bali. designed for budi tek, a chinese-indonesian entrepreneur, ‘budidesa art park’ comprises a series of art gardens, exhibition spaces and a residence surrounded by terraced rice paddies on a site located just north of denpasar, the country’s capital city.


‘budi is my name, desa means village. my dream is to conceive a unique way to have my passion for contemporary art shared with visitors in bali, in indonesia, my home country.’ –  budi tek.

a central path meanders its way through the complex’s gardens and exhibition spaces allowing visitors to experience art within a tropical environment. marked by large-scale contemporary art pieces from renown artists such as ai weiwei, anslem keifer and maurizio cattelan, the project will create a significant art attraction that also makes a lasting contribution to balinese culture.

indoor and outdoor exhibition spaces are integrated with their surrounding context. this is perhaps most evident in the inhabitable roof, which allows visitors to walk through the rice paddies onto the museum’s rooftop sculpture park — experiencing the museum as a continuous landscape. at night, the site comes alive through outdoor video, projections, reflections and illumination across the art gardens. natural elements like plants, rocks and water are transformed by contemporary artists, presenting the tropical flora and fauna in a new way.

like the art collection, the residence combines two vernacular styles: indonesian and chinese. in the balinese house compound each room is a separate small building arranged dynamically across the site. this is offset by the chinese courtyard house, where rooms are adjacent and arranged symmetrically around a communal courtyard. the combination of layouts results in a system that adapts to both the local environment and budi tek’s cultural background.

‘budidesa art park’ is being presented at the inaugural chicago architecture biennial. see here for designboom’s ongoing coverage of the event.

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