white out‘s an ongoing series of posts drawn from a presentation that our winter intern nicolas allinder gave about his research into recent modern residential japanese architecture.
i’ve said it once and i’ll say it again, adolf loos was a genius. loos removed as much ornamentation from a building and it’s components as possible. he was constantly refining down to the essential pieces and yet out of that, despite all the edits and abscissions , his buildings were somehow dynamic and provocative. the best part was the unassuming facades on his little box houses which encapsulated a labyrinth of spaces and constantly morphing floor plans. much in this vain, suep. have designed a box full of treasures. The front façade of house in sendai certainly is bolder than a loos façade, but the interior is just as dynamic and maybe even more whimsical.
it’s great when spaces barely defined by simple components can create lively and thoughtful homes. in basic terms, house in sendai was constructed on the notions of expressing the movement from public to private space in one fluid and bold gesture. by simplifying the plan (quartering the square house into four even squares) suep. was able to focus on the sectional view of the house. this decision creates that bold gesture – a central core shaped like a buttress which provides more and more privacy as you move through the house. the most public space, the kitchen and dining area, are open and unobstructed by the core, which continues to fan out as rooms become increasingly more private, climaxing with the master bedroom on the top floor. there are no walls except those containing the bathroom and utility spaces near the entrance. all the other rooms are fluid and open.
there are of course many restrictions to how inhabitants would live – parents must go through their children’s room to get to bed and you probably can’t get away from the noise of raising two children unless you start hanging out in the bathroom. but practical issues aside this would have been a great place to grow up. this seems to be a common theme for suep. as attested by the always great what we do is secret.
i highly recommend checking out suep. great stuff. i also happen to love seeing people inhabiting dramatic and progressive spaces. this house really hit the spot.
posted by nicolas allinder