Koichi Takada Architects - Sydney

Paperbark Pop-up Restaurant

“Zero Waste” pop-up restaurant

We live in a throw-away society. An estimated 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted globally each year, one-third of all food produced for human consumption. Paperbark was a 191-square meter “Zero Waste” pop-up restaurant for the top level of the Lexus Design Pavilion. One of our smallest projects, both in scale and budget, the space opened on October 31, 2019. At the entrance, a five-meter high bamboo gateway, or Japanese torii, was imagined as the transition from the ordinary to the extraordinary, or from the city to nature. The principal theme of Paperbark builds on the notion of “slow movement.” This idea is carried through all elements of the space, from foraged native foliage to a “zero-waste” menu that used ethically produced, Australian ingredients. We drew inspiration from the Victorian Dandenong Ranges and undulating forms of the native paperbark tree. The ceiling is adorning with a sculptural installation made from over a kilometre of repurposed biodegradable fabric that curves and envelops guests. While simple in geometry, the facade creates an organic language resembling the evocative and emotive paperbark tree. A play of natural textures, colours, light and movement, the space draws an emotional connection to nature at a human scale. The paperbark (Melaleuca quinquenervia) is a small to medium-sized tree, with white bark that peels off in strips, unique to the Australian landscape – “the pavilion becomes a platform, through which we could promote an awareness for the environment and a more purposeful approach to the future of design”.