Sugamo Shinkin Bank – Colorful Sticks
The Ekoda branch is the fourth designed by Emmanuelle Moureaux for the Japanese-based Sugamo Shinkin Bank. Every one of their branches is a wondrous display of bright, tangy colors set against a stark white backdrop. The result is a remarkably pleasing and contemporary architectural effect. As the bank puts it, “creating a place the customers feel happy to visit.”
The architects deliberately blurred the line between “interior” and “exterior” by creating an open-air seating space with 48 separate colorful sticks linking the two areas (29 outside, 19 inside — all about 30 feet tall). This “rainbow shower” erodes the barrier between “the bank’s space” and “public community space,” making for a more inviting experience.
Entering the building, the visitors would notice that they are still in an exterior courtyard leading to the bank’s interior. Here also, the inside and outside are integrated. Walking around the glazed courtyard inside, there is a cafe-like open space filled with natural light. The bamboos in the courtyard extend skyward in concert with the colorful sticks.
The exterior deck space, interior open space, exterior courtyard, and the interior teller counters compose four layers of spaces. The layers are reflected on the glazing, and, combined with complex shadows, they create depth in the space.
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