Anchoring the third phase of our ongoing upgrade and refurbishment works for the International School Ho Chi Minh City (ISHCMC) is the generous new loft space dedicated to arts, crafts, and creative projects.

Free from hard walls or panelled partitions, fluid curves formed by translucent curtains define territories and allow for instantaneous revision of creative spaces to suit the many different art projects and presentations the space is designed to accommodate. These sinuous lines are then referenced in the spiral staircases that frame an elevated platform structure in the centre of the room, which doubles as an observation/individual creativity point, and a storage structure. ⁠

Students are free to climb the stairs and look upon the creative process with a different perspective or use the bean-bagged fitted lookouts for reading, drawing, or elevated inspiration. The main mezzanine floor overlooks a central stage were art transforms into presentation, performance and theatre. Bold colours adorn the ceiling structure and floor, to represent academic grades and encouraging unrestrained creativity and expression.

Materials throughout the loft were chosen for their sustainable properties and ability to withstand student wear-and-tear. Carbon-neutral flooring makes a measurable contribution to reducing the school’s carbon footprint and reinforcing the environmentally responsible values that underpin the school’s ethos. Solar tubes allow natural sunlight to penetrate deep into the space, reducing the need for artificial lighting, further reducing energy consumption.

Providing such a generous and inspirational space dedicated to creativity is rare. It allows students and teachers alike, to embrace their inner artist, exploit their curiosity, explore individual and collective creativity and acquire knowledge, empathy and wisdom on the way.