Skip to Content
photo of City of Loneliness

City of Loneliness

Daegu, South Korea

City of Loneliness

Daegu, South Korea

  • Design Principal

    Alan Maskin

On the 8th floor of the Shinsegae Department Store in Daegu, South Korea, this themed shopping and dining experience takes inspiration from the Wong Kar-wai film “In the Mood for Love.” Designed to resemble a city at night, this interior space is anchored by a central boulevard punctuated by shops and restaurants with façades borrowed equally from the film and those found in historic Seattle neighborhoods. The elevations of the historic brick buildings – from the crafted upper cornices down to the punched windows of mid-level dwelling units and street-level storefronts – are jumbled, allowing visitors to engage with all levels of this indoor “City of Loneliness.”

Design Principal Alan Maskin was inspired by the artwork of American realist painter Edward Hopper in creating the mood of “City of Loneliness,” as Hopper’s characters often evoke a sense of isolation and contemplation. Bright, vivid shop interiors contrast with the gritty storefronts and alleys within “City of Loneliness,” creating a dramatic, immersive environment. Mural artist Erik Burke painted graffiti-based artworks on the walls of this micro-city, adding a layer of authenticity to the urban aesthetic of this architectural installation.

In my work, sometimes a story informs the design of a built project, and sometimes a built project is later turned into a story. Fiction to non‑fiction and back again. Alan Maskin

Team