Tree V: First Time We Met


  • Year: 2017

  • Type: Architecture, Competition Entry (2017 Young Architects Program Finalist)

  • Location: Seoul, Korea

  • Design team: Jae K. Kim, Yesol Lee, Youngjun Lee, Daun Kang

  • Young Architects Program Finalist, exhibited at Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Seoul

Our proposal and narrative, "The first time we met" started from the question of what the origin of our society and architecture are. In terms of the relationship between a tree and architecture, our work focus on two aspects of it, a tree as a place maker as well as the first type of a building. Firstly, a tree might be the first place where people started to have society as Louis Kahn mentioned asa primitive school could begin from a place under a tree where people listened to wise mans speech. Also a tree might be the first type of architecture through its rigidity supporting a wide canopy by a single trunk.

Two steps executed our work. The first is making our own tree. Based on the research of East Asian timber structures, the work recreated a traditional wooden bracketing system. By using a computational methodology for making and designing, we invented the new type of a bracketing system, which realized our own tree. It is strong enough to provide a long canopy for shading and against heavy wind. The second is making a place around a tree. The place will become where people can rest, chat, and meet new friends. Also, on the bridge, people experience the spatial aspect of our tree, and watch the neighboring area, especially Gyeongbokgung Palace from higher level.

"The first time we met" will provide a feeling of surprise to visitors like a big tree in the city. People could perceive the tree as a sculptural object. Also, the first time we met will be the place for various activities. It can be a wish tree. Under the tree, visitors may read a book and take a nap. Children will play on the shallow pond and get cool mist from sprinklers hung under the tree. Eventually, the tree is the place for people, where new relationship begins.