Jingdezhen Imperial Kiln Museum
The Museum, a porcelain museum focusing on Imperial Kiln artifacts, is located in the center of the historical area in Jingdezhen, adjacent to the Imperial Kiln Ruins of Ming Dynasty. It is surrounded by various historical buildings, including old houses, traditional kilns, factories, and residential buildings of the late 1990s. Those buildings have shaped a rich and diverse urban fabric and formed a unique site with enriching historical contexts.



The concept of the museum aims to rediscover both local cultural roots and the innovation ideas addressing revolutionary thinking of the museum experience; thereby recreating the consanguinity among kiln, people, and porcelain.

1  Prototype


As essential structure for the city’s industrial production and as a central place for both public life and cultural memory, the brick kiln has entered the entire city history as architectural form. The prototype of the Museum is translated from traditional brick kiln, it comprises more than half a dozen brick vaults base on the traditional form of the kilns. Each of the brick vaults is of a different size, length and curvature, calling to mind the special and material quality of the kilns. The ground level and lower level connect all vaults and courtyards together with a strong local cultural grounding.

2  A porous installation of wind


Jingdezhen is hot in summer, people have to survive under shade with ventilation, and this is the reason why narrow alley with roof overhang and small vertical courtyard house both create shade and wind tunnels to let people feel comfortable.

The long axis of eight brick vaults is arranged along the north-south direction with two ends open. The arrangement of the open vault and enclosed ones, can not only block the sunlight on the west side, but also transform each vault into a wind tunnel, allowing the cool breeze to flow in and to capture the most frequent south-north wind in summer. The five sunken courtyards of different scales create the chimney effect as in the local vertical courtyards. A three-dimensional wind installation is thus created by both the tunnels where wind blows horizontally and the chimney effect that functions vertically.

3  An installation of natural light


Constructing an interior space that is full of natural light is the primary consideration. First of all, the alternative arrangement of open vaults and enclosed vaults creates a rhythmic sensation of light and shade while walking through the museum. Secondly, the five sunken courtyards channel light down to the floor, completely subvert people’s feelings of the underground space. Moreover, the interior natural light is achieved through the opening of both the end of the vaults, the horizontal slits alongside the floor, the slits between adjacent two vaults and the cylindrical skylights. With all these special ‘windows’ and the porosity of the building, light diffuses into the interior space of the museum through different dimensions and ways. Natural light is a medium that weaves people, exhibits, and architecture together.

Structure and Materials


The basic structure of the museum is arched structure system, it is made up of concrete poured in between two layers masonry brick walls.

Using recycled kiln bricks to build house is a significant character in Jingdezhen because kilns have to be demolished every two or three years in order to keep a certain thermal performance. The recycled old kiln bricks are mixed with new bricks together to reflect the local culture of construction.

This interweaving of nature, ruins, wind, light, sound, and new and old materials must arouse interest, curiosity, create new questions and give new answers by interacting with the mind of people who inevitably evoke memories and enjoy a unique experience. The past cannot be erased but rewritten by recounting with a new awareness and maturity, a sort of contemporary archeology.

  • Design Year: 2016- 2017

    Completion Year: 2020

    Total Floor Area: 10,370sqm



    187 Zhushan Middle Road,

    Zhushan District, Jingdezhen City, Jiangxi Province, China


    Architecture, Interior and Landscape Design:

    Studio Zhu Pei


    Design in Charge:

    Zhu Pei




    Zhou Rong


    Art Consultants:

    Wang Mingxian, Li Xiangning


    Design Team:

    Shuhei Nakamura, He Fan,

    Han Mo, You Changchen,

    Zhang Shun, Liu Yian,

    Liu Ling, Wu Zhigang, Du Yang,

    Yang Shengchen, Chen Yida,

    He Chenglong, Ding Xinyue,

    Nie Wenhao


  • Cooperative Design in Architecture and Landscape:

    Architectural Design and Research Institute of Tsinghua University


    Cooperative Design in Interior and Exhibition:

    Beijing Qingshang Architectural Ornamental Engineering CO., LTD.

    Academy of Arts & Design, Tsinghua University


    Structural, MEP and Green Building Consultant:

    Architectural Design and Research Institute of Tsinghua University


    Façades Consultant:

    Shenzhen Dadi Facade Technology CO., LTD.


    Lighting Consultant:

    Ning Field Lighting Design CO., LTD.



    Building Science & Technology Institute, Zhejiang University



    Sichuan Province Clicknetherfield Exhibition and Display Co., LTD.




  • Client:

    Jingdezhen Municipal Bureau of Culture Radio Television Press Publication and Tourism,

    Jingdezhen Ceramic Culture Tourism Group


    General Contractor:

    China Construction First Group Corporation Limited,

    Huajiang Construction CO., LTD of China Construction First Group


    Photography by schranimage, Tian Fangfang, Zhang Qinquan, Studio Zhu Pei

C7   Universal Creative Park
9 Jiuxianqiao North Road,  Beijing

TEL: 86-10-86227468

© 2023 BY Studio Zhu Pei