First-time shoppers stepping into Conemoting Market in Shenzhen, China, are in for quite a surprise as they are immersed into a red and yellow realm of transparencies and reflections, before descending to a white and silver surrealist landscape of giant spheres, hand-shaped chairs and blood-red details. Comprising a ground floor café that turns into a bar in the evening, and a fantastical retail space in the basement, the Market was conceived by Hangzhou-based interior design practice Yebin Design as a social venue rather than an emporium, whose Instagrammable interiors and lifestyle appeal reflect the seamless movement between the physical and online worlds that characterize China’s Gen Z.
The ground floor café and bar area is clad from top to bottom in transparent orange and red tempered glass panels creating an immersive interior of kaleidoscopic reflections whose warm luminescence beckons passers-by to come inside. Placed in front of the building’s concrete structure, the coloured glazing transforms the concrete’s discoloration into hypnotic, organic patterns, while glass partitions further enhance the hallucinatory sensation.
The colour-infused seductiveness of the ground floor is counterbalanced by the monotone whiteness of the retail area downstairs, an expansive, five-metre-tall space where patrons can find an eclectic apparel selection including the Market’s own-clothing brands, as well as hang out and socialize. The prevailing aesthetic is one of industrial-chic where exposed concrete and visible air ducts painted in matt silver are paired with glossy white surfaces and shiny metallic detailing.
Red accents in the form of rugs, rails, trims and other features jazz up the all-white and silver surroundings as well as echo the ambience of the ground floor bar. Bespoke chairs designed in the shape of giant hands are accompanied by oversized arms protruding from the walls and ceiling while large spherical volumes are playfully juxtaposed with the space’s rectilinear architecture. The surreal ambience is topped off with a giant giraffe whose head extends into the bar area upstairs, in what is a bold and symbolic gesture that encapsulates the designers’ whimsical creativity.