Chengdu, in Sichuan province, China, is renowned for its love of storytelling. An ideal location for this Zhongshuge bookstore, 5th in the chain of the same name. Designed by X+Living, it’s a total reimagining of the commercial store.
Zhongshuge library spans 1,000 square meters of Yintai Shopping Mall in Chengdu, China. At first glance, it bears an ice curtain wall engraved with texts, some of which, for this branch, reflect the region’s Shu culture. Just beyond this storefront, curved book columns mimic a blowing bamboo forest. They offer visitors a familiar atmosphere, tinged with modernity. At the corner, the step leads to the children’s section. A whole world of enchantment! A jungle of books, sheltered under giant mushrooms, where houses, mills and baby pandas hide among the shelves. The mirrors on the ceiling divide this world, creating the impression of being Alice in her legendary wonderland. On the other side of the bamboos, it is the antithesis of this childish universe: a space 5 meters high in red bricks, very sober, completely filled with books. Upstairs, walkways crisscross the walls and cross the hall from door to door. From here, a staircase leads to the building’s amphitheater. All in curves which, on the ground, form a level of steps-rests; it is here that conferences and artistic performances are organized, adding to this structure a whole new cultural dimension.