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Helen Street by mw|works architecture + design

The clients were living on a rural property east of Seattle but were drawn back to the vibrancy of the city. This new project would distill their way of living into a smaller footprint, specifically tailored to their tastes and activities. Early design discussions focused on a simple modern structure with a quiet palette constructed on a modest budget. The home should be open and light filled but also provide privacy. Above all, the owners described a quiet design integrated with landscape that would create a tangible calmness in the home. The concept grew from this premise, drawing complexity from the opportunities and constraints of an urban corner lot. A courtyard in the center of the site brings light and private outdoor space deeper into the site and serves as an organizational hub. The result is a project that is simple but very intentional and serves as a backdrop to the landscape and the lifestyle of its inhabitants.

Helen Street, Seattle, WA, USA, by mw|works architecture + design

Typewriter Guns by Éric Nado

The material world was built, first and foremost: one of the roles art can take is of reinterpreting its forms and functions. Through sculpture-assemblage, Éric Nado transforms and reorganizes certain objects to reveal other possibilities through their forms or intended functions. Using iconic metal objects such as typewriters and sewing machines, Nado materializes concepts such as labor and memory. Filled with nostalgia, the objects transformed into sculptures tell compelling stories.

Typewriter Guns, by Éric Nado, at Galerie C.O.A

Hotel Mono by Spacedge Designs

Hotel Mono is a chic hideaway set in six historical shop houses of modern design. The beautifully rejuvenated buildings retain original charm with characteristic airwells and Rococo-era windows; slipping into traditional Singapore and interweaving with the city’s urban bustle.

Hotel Mono, Singapore, by Spacedge Designs

Villa Ypsilon by LASSA Architects

Located in an olive grove in southern Peloponnese, this summer residence is characterized by an Ypsilon shaped green roof that acts as both an accessible extension of the terrain, while framing the most significant views from the inside out. The project was designed by London and Brussels based architects Theo Sarantoglou Lalis and Dora Sweijd from LASSA architects. The roof’s bifurcating pathways define three courtyards that form distinct hemispheres with specific occupancy depending on the course of the sun. The house is located on the top of a hill which provides vistas towards the bay of Schiza and Sapientza as well as mountain views towards the east. The height of the house is limited to the tip of the olive trees to enable its integration with the surrounding landscape.

The interior spaces are organized in two main parts: A more private area containing three bedrooms and two bathrooms with views towards the east and a more common area towards the south containing the kitchen area and the living room which provide continuous access to all three courtyards. The circulation through, around and on top of the house forms a continuous promenade comprising indoor and outdoor activities. The form of the concrete shell coupled with the planted roof and cross ventilation strategy provides an environmental response which prevents the need for mechanical cooling systems. The remote location of the project in combination with the limited budget and non-standard geometry induced a construction strategy that called for a large amount of off-site prefabrication and self-assembly which allowed to reduce the construction time to 7 months without compromising anything in terms of quality or exceeding the budget. “We decided to buy a CNC machine that allowed for extensive prototyping and the production of non-standard elements. This included the concrete shell formwork, the livingroom lost formwork/acoustic ceiling, custom window frames, interior furniture and partition systems as well as landscape and pool formers.” Theo Sarantoglou Lalis This ‘hands-on’ approach allowed for a minimal use of commercial ‘off-the-shelf’ products while instead favoring locally sourced materials such as concrete, terrazzo and marble.

Villa Ypsilon, Messenia, Greece, by LASSA Architects

The Pure Foosball Table by Alain Gilles for Debuchy by Toulet

The Pure is the modern vision of a classic foosball table. The rules, the game, and the fun remain the same, but it has now been transformed into an object that can be displayed in a living room or in the lobby of a contemporary hotel for instance. The foosball doesn’t have to be hidden in the basement anymore and it is no more just for gaming centers or coffee shops. It has been designed in order to bring a sense of warmth for those moments of togetherness with the family. With the strong use of wooden elements, quiet presence, and a reference to Nordic design it aims to be a somewhat timeless modern piece. From the top, its shape refers to modern football stadiums ( soccer stadiums ). But it has also been design in order to have a soft feminine touch and a minimal feel to make it more acceptable to women, and thus in the end acceptable in a house.

The Pure, Foosball Table, by Alain Gilles, for Debuchy by Toulet

The Pavilion at The Norman Foster Foundation

The Norman Foster Foundation opened its doors in central Madrid. Inhabiting in an old residential palace, and having undergone extensive renovation works since, the Foundation have also constructed their own contemporary courtyard pavilion. Housing a treasure trove of artefacts from Lord Foster’s personal collection, the structure-which is shaped like the wing of an aircraft-also exhibits a newly restored 1927 Avions Voisin C7 originally owned by Le Corbusier.

The pavilion-the design of which was led by Lord Foster, David Delgado, Raúl Gómez and Jorge López-is tucked between the palace and an adjacent neighbour. With a portion of the façade (a wide glass door weighing 2.7 tons and measuring 6 metres in length) opening onto a sun-drenched, shaded courtyard, the intention is that this pavilion-alongside its primary function as an exhibition space-will also host talks, discussion groups, and events.

By collaborating closely with (primarily) Spanish craftspeople in metal and glass, the design team have been able to develop a combination of slim, beat-blasted stainless steel sections welded together and mirror-polished edges that “dematerialize the bulk of supporting structures.”

The Pavilion, Madrid, Spain, at The Norman Foster Foundation

Haus am Horn by Georg Muche

In 1919, at a time in which Germany was still in upheaval over its defeat in the First World War (and compounded by the loss of its monarchy), the Academy of Fine Arts and School of Applied Arts in Weimar, Germany, were combined to form the first Bauhaus. Its stated goal was to erase the separation that had developed between artists and craftsmen, combining the talents of both occupations in order to achieve a unified architectonic feeling which they believed had been lost in the divide. Students of the Bauhaus were to abandon the framework of design standards that had been developed by traditional European schools and experiment with natural materials, abstract forms, and their own intuitions. Although the school’s output was initially Expressionist in nature, by 1922 it had evolved into something more in line with the rising International Style.

An exhibition of work produced by the Bauhaus in 1923 perfectly embodied this changing perspective of design. True to the institution’s roots, the exhibition was not merely a gallery of objects or images, but an entire house filled with works by Bauhaus students. The Haus am Horn, as it was named, was designed by Georg Muche and Adolf Meyer as a prototype for affordable housing which could be quickly and inexpensively mass-produced. The use of experimental building techniques and materials not only helped to achieve this goal, but dovetailed perfectly with the increasing focus on functionalism in the Bauhaus curriculum.

Muche, who was a painter and teacher at the Bauhaus, had already been in the process of designing a house for himself and his wife when the school announced a competition for a model residence. His winning entry was bold in its simplicity: a square plan, with a ring of rooms surrounding a central living room. Each space was designed with an explicit program in mind, and intentionally specialized so that it could not be used for any other purpose.[3] Aside from the living room, the house comprised a room for the man, a room for the lady, a room for children, a guest room, dining room, kitchen, and a work niche.

Haus am Horn, Am Horn 61, 99425 Weimar, Germany, by Georg Muche
via: archdaily
Photography by Cameron Blaylock

Casa Maria & José by Sergio Sampaio Arquitetura

The owners – an elderly couple with four children – require that the house should be single-story due to the reduced mobility of some family members, demanding attention to accessibility standards – ramp, lift, accessibility bars in bathrooms, etc. The main program of social housing, leisure, and intimate areas – were distributed in a single pavilion that subtly lands under the ground, without effectively touching the ground. Such subtlety is due to the structuring of pillars and metal beams.
 
The service and garage areas are located under the main pavilion, occupying the void coming from the natural slope of the land. At the same time that the facade of such a volume presents itself as a closed box for its surroundings, internally there is a large patio that allows the visual integration between the environments of the house, besides ensuring the entrance of permanent natural lighting. The large pool made of prestressed concrete connects to the main volume of the house with the purpose of integrating leisure activities with the social life of the house, facilitating the circulation and access of the residents of the house.

Casa Maria & José, by Sergio Sampaio Arquitetura
Photography by Leonardo Finotti

Photography: Vending Machines by Benedikt Partenheimer

Japanese architecture is marked by vending machines. You can find them on almost every street corner and they have become an integral part of Japanese culture. Especially at night they become a visible reference of energy consumption and likewise emanate an absurd surreal and sad beauty.

Japan has the highest amount of vending machines in the world, about 5.6 million. That’s about 1 for every 23 people. Vending Machines sold more than $42 billion worth of goods in 2015. The Fukushima nuclear crises has changed the debate over energy policy, raised public awareness about energy use and sparked strong antinuclear sentiment.

Japanese vending machines consume about as much energy as one nuclear power plant produces. The Series calls attention to energy consumption and consumerism – do we need all the machines we create and do we want to live in a world that is becoming more and more “convenient”?

Vending Machines, by Benedikt Partenheimer

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