Hengshan Calligraphy Art Museum, Taiwan's first public art museum dedicated to calligraphy is located on the bank of the pond in Hengshan, Taoyuan. The building takes its form from the mountain-shaped inkstone used in calligraphy. The adjoining pond represents water used in grinding ink. The architecture is expressed as pure inkstone spatial pattern surrounding the waterfront. The main body of the architecture is divided into five blocks enclosing a series of courtyards. The courtyards contain exhibition areas of nature (heaven, earth). They are ephemeral spaces extending to the pond and forming fields of art connected with the environment.
The five inkstones-like architectural blocks are connected by two spatial axes. One axis is formed by a shallow mound next to the entrance. The mound is shaped like a wolf sprouting long grass. The other axis extends along an area that faces the lake forming an inkstone pond. The two forms are connected through two opposite axes.
We studied the viewing angle of calligraphy which is akin to reading a long scrolling painting on the surface of the water. Slowly walking across an isolated bridge one follows a painterly axis of light and dark. The viewer becomes a part of nature in the form of a painting scroll. The landscape is designed with the flowing silhouette of wild grasses in mind, they flow with the wind. In this flowing landscape, the artistic experience is replaced by nature.
The exterior wall of the building is cedar finished architectural concrete. The glulam roof truss of the main exhibition hall is produced in Komatsu, Japan. The structural concept of weaving is realized through a reinterpretation of the modern wood space- frame construction. Steel joineries enhance the structural forces at work in this large-span space. The large staircase is transformed into a double volume exhibition area. The wooden screens composed of yellow juniper trellis evoke the private academies of ancient china and the culture of book collecting.
The exhibition area extends into the courtyard. It continues the theme of the ancient academy through opening and fully open glass screens. Visitors can explore, crossing the hills and ponds and indulge roaming in the aesthetics of calligraphy. The Hengshan Calligraphy Museum reinterprets indigenous courtyard spaces and the culture of ancient eastern humanities. The museum attempts to harmonize the art of calligraphy with nature.