Feng Shui of the Nordic Embassies in Berlin
December 29, 2012
Yesterday we went to an exhibition on Icelandic architecture above the lecture hall in the Nordic Embassies in Berlin. The building complex from outside looks wonderful and the planning of the 5 embassies done by six different architects fit in well on the site, wrapping itself around the corner of two busy streets nicely with clever mechanized sun-shading and privacy louvres.
Internally the use of natural timber contrasted with stainless steel and glass in a backdrop of off-form concrete all showed a remarkably beautiful Nordic character, fresh and elegant. We were very pleased with the opportunity of enjoying a Scandinavian way of doing modern architecture, until we came out of the exhibition and look at the outdoor space separating the 5 embassies and the lecture hall.
The “gaps” between the buildings remained us the no-man’s land separating East Berlin from West Berlin in the cold war days. There is no Ju-Qi (gather the spatial qi) in the outdoor space, as though the Finns don’t want to talk to the Norwegians and the Swedes deliberately want to ignore the Danes. Is this a deliberate aim of the planners?
We felt here is an excellent opportunity for communication between the five Nordic neighbours missed in the planning, the two diagonal and the two horizontal Sha-Qi lines divided up the six buildings severely, instead of linking them together with some friendly outdoor space. In Feng Shui, the aim in ordering the environment is to Ju-Qi, so we can Ju Qing (gather the feelings and affections) and when there is spatial feelings and affection, there is good Feng Shui (Ju Qi = Ju Qing = Ju Fu. 聚氣 ＝ 聚情 ＝ 聚福).