Posted by Cynthia | Filed under Musings
Prefab. Typically we think of prefab architecture as a construction technique used when producing multiple installations of exactly the same design. In the case of the Hemeroscopium house designed by Antón García-Abril of Ensamble Studio, prefab is redefined. The custom structure is constructed of prefabricated components, creating a unique and dramatic design. One large granite block holds this dynamic structure in place. Carefully engineered, in perfect balance, and absolutely breathtaking.
“It took us a year to engineer but only seven days to build the structure, thanks to a total prefabrication of the different elements and a perfectly coordinated rhythm of assembly. All of our effort oriented to develop the technique that would allow creating a very specific space. And thus, a new astonishing language is invented, where form disappears giving way to the naked space. Hemeroscopium house materializes the peak of its equilibrium with what in Ensamble Studio we ironically call the “G point”, a twenty ton granite stone, expression of the force of gravity and a physical counterweight to the whole structure.”
Images and excerpts sourced at the architects website: http://www.ensamble.info/actualizacion/ensamblestudio
Have you heard of Wiki House? It’s absolutely fabulous.
From designing a house to an ancillary building this concept could revolutionize the D-I-Y craze. WikiHouse is an Open Community Construction Set. It’s a set of parts. Think of Lego’s or an erector set. You customize the solution, and create a design that meets your personal programmatic needs. Building plans are downloaded free. This group of collaborative designers who have developed the system, have made great design accessible and affordable to all. It empowers each one of us to build with our own hands, with or without knowledge of traditional construction methods. It certainly is applicable on my property. Imagine the possibilities in countries where homes and community buildings are not affordable. Flat pack homes arrive and community members can join together, as in the days of a barn raising, to personally impact and improve their environment without specialized skills or power tools. Very cool. Watch a video of the prototype being built here.
So, are you ready to get started?
Download houses and components which are created and shared by an open community of designers from around the world. Individual parts can be combined or adapted using the free program Google Sketchup.
Click ‘Make this House’ from within Google Sketchup and WikiHouse generates a complete set of milling drawings from your model, which can be used by a CNC cutter to fabricate the house parts.
Posted by Cynthia | Filed under Musings
These minimalist prefabs are an interesting option for the homeowner looking for an efficient and cost effective dwelling. Micro-buildings could be a perfect full time residence, office or vacation home. The units take advantage of the verticality of the design by creating a sleeping loft above the kitchen and bathroom. This gesture allows for a double height space in the living area, creating the illusion of a much larger room. Large windows for access to views and for maximizing daylight offer a built solution for sun control, with wood slat louvers. The choices presented for exterior cladding alone are reason to give these dwellings a closer look. Unconventional options such as rubber, and concrete are openminded and forward thinking options.
The firms website provides information about their sustainability focus and execution on these petit dwellings. They currently offer four unit sizes appropriately titled big dwelle.ing, little dwelle.ing, office dwelle.ing and beach dwell.ing, ranging in size from 24 square metres to a mere 7.5 square metres.
To learn more about the dwelle sustainable micro building, visit their website. All images courtesy of www.dwelle.co.uk.
"Meal machine, experimental laboratory, status symbol, domestic prison, or the creative and spiritual heart of the home"? www.moma.org
This weekend, an exciting exhibition opened at MOMA in NYC, titled . The exhibit runs from September 15, 2010 to March 14, 2011. Organized in conjunction with their newest publication Modern Women: Women Artists at The Museum of Modern Art, the exhibit presents a fully assembled Frankfurt Kitchen from the Hohenblick Housing Estate, Ginnheim, Frankfurt, Germany from 1926-1927.
Designed by architect Margarete Schutte-Lihotzky (1897-2000), "The Frankfurt Kitchen was designed like a laboratory or factory and based on contemporary theories about efficiency, hygiene, and workflow". "Over the course of the past century no other room has been the focus of such intensive aesthetic and technological innovation, or as loaded with cultural significance. Kitchen design has been both a central concern of modernism and fundamental to our concept of modern life. Drawn entirely from MoMA’s collection, this exhibition explores the twentieth-century transformation of the kitchen as a barometer of changing technologies, aesthetics, and ideologies".
Grete Schütte-Lihotzky (seated) with colleagues from the Frankfurt Municipal Building Department c. 1928 "Schütte-Lihotzky was the only woman in the team of architects assembled by Ernst May, director of Frankfurt’s Municipal Building Department. The white lab coats worn by the architects emphasize the team’s rational, scientific approach" .
It is a rare and wonderful opportunity to experience modular kitchen design of this era, up close and personal. This kitchen is an excellent example of early prefab design. What I appreciate most about the Frankfurt Kitchen is the timelessness, which is due to purposeful planning, based on function rather than trend. Efficiency and organization is evident in the design of the space. Every element and detail, such as these built in canisters for food storage, were beautiful custom solutions to everyday design problems. I believe this kitchen would function beautifully in a modern day home. I'd love to move in! Enjoy the show!
Get more information about the Counter Space: Design And The Modern Kitchen exhibit.