With its impressive moving façade, the Bund Finance Centre on the Bund waterfront in Shanghai, China, designed by Foster + Partners and Heatherwick Studio, is a landmark building that defines the end of Zhongshan Road, one of the most famous streets in the city.

Resembling a moving veil, the building’s facade adapts to the changing use of the building and reveals a stage on the balcony and views towards Pudong. It was developed in collaboration with local engineers from Tongji University.

The veiled facade is made up of layers of 675 individual magnesium alloy “tassels” – a reference to the traditional Chinese bridal headdress – and is organised along three tracks. The tassels range in length from around 2m to 16m so that as each track independently moves, the veil rotates with the tassels overlapping and producing different visual effects and levels of opacity.

Courtesy of Foster + Partners/Heatherwick Studio