A minimalist home in Portugal emphasizes stunning valley views

August 8, 2018 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on A minimalist home in Portugal emphasizes stunning valley views

Architects and their clients are often surprised when their visions don’t quite align after the initial ideas are transformed into renderings, specs and floor plans. But when MJARC Arquitectos met with a couple who wanted a house in Douro Valley in Marco de Canaveses,  Portugal , it was a euphoric meeting of minds. All parties shared the same vision — a pristine and absolute articulation of minimalist architecture. With a setting as picturesque as this one, highlighted by sweeping views of the rolling curves of vineyard -covered valleys and the mesmerizing Douro River, the goal was to leave the undulating landscape unscathed. The house was constructed as close to the terrain as possible, with the upper levels providing more encompassing vistas. The “crouching building” concept drove the choices for the size, design and exterior accouterments of the home. Related: Derelict property transformed into a vibrant, sunny hostel in Portugal The interior is warm and inviting, with an open floor plan that gracefully flows from room to room, clad in a combination of deep wood shades, rustic stones, concrete and stark, black accents. The pool is designed to give the illusion of it flowing directly into the river. The views from every level focus on the surrounding forest and foliage and achieves the symbiosis with nature desired by all parties. To accommodate the tastes of the homeowners’ visitors throughout the year, MJARC Arquitectos incorporated sustainable construction and energy sources as well as clever spaces that could easily be adapted for multiple uses. The roof is even topped with lush greenery, a welcome addition to the home. The combined efforts on this project not only thrilled the architects and clients — the house was recently nominated for an award in the Home category by the World Architecture Festival , where it is one of 18 finalists. The winner will be announced at ceremonies scheduled for November 28-30 in Amsterdam. + MJARC Arquitectos Images via João Ferrand

See the rest here:
A minimalist home in Portugal emphasizes stunning valley views

This trippy tea house in Shanghai is built from 999 handmade timber sticks

June 13, 2018 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on This trippy tea house in Shanghai is built from 999 handmade timber sticks

Chinese design studio MINAX Architects have combined contemporary architecture with traditional Chinese tea drinking rituals in the ONE Teahouse, a cocoon-like space crafted from 999 handmade wooden sticks. Spanning an area of just 17.86 square meters (about 59 square feet), the compact tea house is a result of the renovation of an existing timber structure in Shanghai’s Hongkou District. The architects completed the project over the course of three months. Tea has long been an important part of traditional Chinese culture. However, with the advent of tea bags and busy lifestyles, the historic rituals surrounding tea are often overlooked or forgotten. With ONE Teahouse, MINAX Architects wanted to create a space where drinking a cup of tea would be elevated into an act of spiritual significance. Drawing inspiration from traditional Chinese wooden architecture, MINAX Architects inserted handmade wooden sticks of varying lengths into the oriented strand board walls of a rectangular room. Each stick was cut to a different angle and length to create the illusion of an ellipsoidal space. At the center of the space is a low “YI ZHANG” tea table by Shanghai-based furniture designers MINAXDO surrounded by six seats. LED lights illuminate the interior. Related: ARCHSTUDIO inserts a modern teahouse into an ancient Chinese structure “On one side of the room, a round window faces the urban road, while a square doorway is adjacent to a garden on the other side,” MINAX Architects wrote. “That is because [we] were inspired by an old Chinese saying —’The circle has a tread of auto-rotating, and the square has a tread of stable.’ The specificity of the space brings the people strong psychological hints. The theme of the teahouse is ‘ONE.’ ‘ONE’ and ‘RESTART’ are two words of the space where we could reach a higher state of consciousness.” + MINAX Architects Images by Zhigang Lu

Here is the original: 
This trippy tea house in Shanghai is built from 999 handmade timber sticks

A 1920 Swiss barn is reborn as a modern home for a family of five

June 11, 2018 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on A 1920 Swiss barn is reborn as a modern home for a family of five

Swiss design studio Ralph Germann architectes  has overhauled an old drafty barn into a beautiful contemporary home with a new timber annex. Located in the rural village of Orsières in southeast Switzerland, the barn renovation and expansion project was commissioned by a family of five who sought a modern and light-filled abode. The adaptive reuse project—named the House EKC—was built with locally sourced materials and is equipped with an air-water heat pump, solar thermal panels, and dimmable LEDs. The House EKC covers an area of 2,153 square feet and includes a 108-square-feet outdoor terrace . The old barn had originally been used for hay storage in the upper loft while the lower volume was used as a stable for goats or sheep. Ralph Germann completely gutted the barn and rebuilt a reinforced concrete structure, including the walls and slabs, to meet seismic code. Thermal insulation was applied in the interior in order to preserve the barn’s “‘vernacular’ aesthetics.” “The insertion of large windows into the masonry respected “the principle of origin”,” said the architects. “The glass simply took the place where wood has originally been and supplies light and passive heat. A balcony-loggia made out of concrete and wood took the place of the old balcony which was used to sun-dry the hay.” The new wooden annex mimics the proportions and low gabled roofline of the historic barn. The timber, which includes larch and spruce wood, were sourced locally from the Val Ferret region. Related: The rustic exterior of this abandoned barn hides a surprising space to get away from it all The light-filled interior features plaster walls and ceilings finished in mineral paint “white RAL 9010” that reflect light and helps create the illusion of more space. Oiled-brush larch wood lines the floors. The main staircase is built of solid larch and serves as the backbone of the house. The solid larch furniture was designed by Ralph Germann to ensure a cohesive interior design. The custom design also presented the opportunity to create a high-back bench in the dining area that doubles as a guardrail for the staircase. The kitchen features white laminate with “Dekton gray concrete” countertops. + Ralph Germann architectes Images by Lionel Henriod

Read the original post:
A 1920 Swiss barn is reborn as a modern home for a family of five

The energy-efficient Aspen tiny home is built tough to withstand Canadian winters

June 11, 2018 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

Comments Off on The energy-efficient Aspen tiny home is built tough to withstand Canadian winters

Over the years, tiny homes have popped up everywhere from coastal landscapes to lush woodlands. But now, one Canadian-based builder is proving that tiny homes can be just as resilient in the harsh frigid winters of British Columbia. Borealis Tiny Homes come installed with various features that keep the interior warm and cozy year-round, including radiant underfloor heating, efficient heat recovery ventilation systems and gel fuel fireplaces. Clad in honey-toned cedar and dark metal slats, the company’s latest project, the Aspen, is a luxurious tiny home on wheels  that boasts a a sleek, cabin-inspired design. According to Borealis, the structure was built with locally-sourced materials whenever possible. A local wood mill crafted the Aspen’s interior paneling and loft area. The cedar siding, metal roofing, hardwood flooring and bamboo countertops are also local products. Related: Custom ordered tiny homes provide compact living options without sacrificing on comfort Inside, the tiny home is quite spacious. There is 200 square feet of living area on the lower level and a 68-square-foot upper level sleeping loft.  The living space is bright and airy thanks to several windows that let in optimal natural light . The home is also equipped with LED lighting. The minimalist decor inside the tiny home is custom-made to be extremely space-efficient. The living room has a fold-out sofa and small working area in the corner. Stairs that double as storage space lead up to the kitchen, which is equipped with a beautiful bamboo countertop. The space is installed with full-sized appliances, and there is additional space for a dishwasher or washer/dryer combo. The sleeping loft , which is big enough for a queen-sized bed, is accessed by climbing some steps up onto a landing and then into bed. Thanks to the high ceiling, the bedroom is incredibly spacious, especially when compared to traditional tiny homes. The Aspen is also equipped with various energy-efficient features to withstand the cold Canadian climate. The radiant flooring has an additional heat recovery system to keep the home at a pleasant temperature all year long. The temperature is also maintained by a gel fuel fireplace, which provides a nice ambiance for the cabin-like tiny house. + Borealis Tiny Homes Via New Atlas Images via Borealis Tiny Homes

Read more here: 
The energy-efficient Aspen tiny home is built tough to withstand Canadian winters

Praying mantises wearing tiny glasses help researchers discover new type of 3D vision

February 12, 2018 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

Comments Off on Praying mantises wearing tiny glasses help researchers discover new type of 3D vision

This praying mantis isn’t just wearing minuscule 3D glasses for the cute factor, but to help scientists learn more about 3D vision. A Newcastle University team discovered a novel form of 3D vision, or stereo vision, in the insects – and compared human and insect stereo vision for the very first time. Their findings could have implications for visual processing in robots . Humans aren’t the only creatures with stereo vision, which “helps us work out the distances to the things we see,” according to the university . Cats, horses, monkeys, toads, and owls have it too – but the only insect we know about with 3D vision is the praying mantis. Six Newcastle University researchers obtained new insight into their robust stereo vision with the help of small 3D glasses temporarily attached to the insects with beeswax. Related: Praying mantises hunt down and eat small birds, including hummingbirds The researchers designed an insect 3D cinema, showing a praying mantis a film of prey. The insects would actually try to catch the prey because the illusion was so convincing. And the scientists were able to take their work to the next level, showing the mantises “complex dot-patterns used to investigate human 3D vision” so they could compare our 3D vision with an insect’s for the first time. According to the university, humans see 3D in still images by matching details of the image each eye sees. “But mantises only attack moving prey so their 3D doesn’t need to work in still images. The team found mantises don’t bother about the details of the picture but just look for places where the picture is changing…Even if the scientists made the two eyes’ images completely different, mantises can still match up the places where things are changing. They did so even when humans couldn’t.” The journal Current Biology published their work online last week . Lead author Vivek Nityananda, a behavioral ecologist, described the praying mantis’ stereo vision as “a completely new form of 3D vision.” Future robots could benefit from these findings: instead of 3D vision based on complex human stereo vision, researchers might be able to take some tips from praying mantis stereo vision, which team member Ghaith Tarawneh said probably doesn’t require a lot of computer processing since insect brains are so small. + Newcastle University + Current Biology Images via Newcastle University, UK/Phys.org

Here is the original post:
Praying mantises wearing tiny glasses help researchers discover new type of 3D vision

LEGO Hand Bag turns you into a minifigsorta

October 19, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on LEGO Hand Bag turns you into a minifigsorta

The rectangular paper bag is like regular shopping bags in many respects. It’s just the right size for hauling your LEGO store loot, and sturdy enough to stand up on its own. Inside the bag are two handles, placed on opposite long sides of the bag. However, that’s where the similarities end, because the LEGO Hand Bag has one additional amusing feature. Related: LEGO releases set with stay-at-home dad and working mom minifigures When a person is holding the bag by its built-in handles, their (human) hands are covered up by bright yellow plastic hands resembling those of a LEGO minifigure . While the illusion works best when the customer is wearing a long-sleeved shirt or jacket, the promotional bag can make anyone look like they belong in LEGOland or, at the very least, like an extra from the LEGO movie. The kooky bag has been making its way around the internet for the past several days, but there’s still no word of an official response from the folks at LEGO HQ. Surely, they’ve seen it by now, so we can only hope they are deep in discussions over what kind of check to cut for the design duo who created what LEGO’s own advertising department didn’t think to attempt. Via Junho Lee and Hyun Chul Choi Images via Hyun Chul Choi and LEGO

Read the original post:
LEGO Hand Bag turns you into a minifigsorta

Shipping container is converted into a chic portable boutique shop in Toronto

August 16, 2016 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

Comments Off on Shipping container is converted into a chic portable boutique shop in Toronto

Needs & Wants Studio sourced the container from the Canadian supplier Storstac and, following designs they created last fall, painted the facade white and lined the interior with light-colored wood. To give the small 160-square-foot shipping container a sense of spaciousness, the mobile boutique created entrances on both ends that are kept open to expand the showroom’s footprint to the outdoors. Mirrored, one-way glazing was also inserted into two large square cutouts on the long walls. Related: Australia’s Largest Cargotecture House is a Modern Masterpiece Built from 31 Shipping Containers The interior is minimally decorated and a large mirror propped against one wall helps with the illusion of spaciousness. Needs & Wants Studio’s clothing line, which focuses on upscale mens outerwear, is elegantly displayed on metal racks. The herringbone -patterned floor and uneven timber paneling on the walls and ceiling give the space texture to keep it from looking dull. In addition to the mobile boutique’s scheduled tour, the Toronto brand has plans to create a second portable showroom that will be “designed for water.” + Needs & Wants Studio Via Dezeen Images via Needs & Wants Studio

Read more from the original source:
Shipping container is converted into a chic portable boutique shop in Toronto

Ekaterinensky Congress Center glows like a lantern on the Kuban River in Russia

July 29, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on Ekaterinensky Congress Center glows like a lantern on the Kuban River in Russia

The building combines orthogonal and curved surfaces with a glass curtain facade that follows the sinuous plan of the building volume oriented towards the river. At night, the curved glass windows and a large brise-soleil in oxidized copper create an appearance of a lantern visible all along the river bank. Related: ‘Kinetic’ rooftop garden uses pallets and plants to create the illusion of movement Programmatically, the building is divided into two areas, along with outside spaces and roof terraces . The entire building is slightly elevated above street level, allowing the architects to create two underground floors with a parking space, technical rooms and service areas. The large, triple-height entrance dominates the building. Thanks to the presence of movable, soundproof walls, the main conference hall can be split into a 720-seat plenary hall, 3 parallel 200-seat halls and 6 small 60-seat halls. + Piuarch

The rest is here:
Ekaterinensky Congress Center glows like a lantern on the Kuban River in Russia

‘Limits’ coffee table plays with distortion and spatial limits

April 7, 2016 by  
Filed under Green

Comments Off on ‘Limits’ coffee table plays with distortion and spatial limits

Geometric shapes come together to form a smooth design that plays with space and function. Called Limits, the idea is “a compact table that pushes our perception of physical and philosophical boundaries,” states Singaporean designer, Kimberly Koh. Created entirely from wooden flat triangles, the joints have been smoothed over, giving the illusion of weightlessness and a sleek composition. Tapered joints and contrasting wood tones maintain the contrast between the various triangular planes, which therefore appear independent from one another. The absence of any vertical edges distorts the sense of perspective, thus distorting the ‘spatial limits’ of the table. The projecting, cantilevered design establishes a sense of imbalance, which suggests that the center of gravity will shift when items are placed on top of it. The middle compartment is removable, creating a more flexible design for users, who can mold the table to suit their creative and practical needs. + Florence Institute The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link. Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing!

View original post here: 
‘Limits’ coffee table plays with distortion and spatial limits

Formabilio’s Duale Double-Faced Dining Table Can Change the Character of a Room With a Simple Move

October 29, 2014 by  
Filed under Eco, Green

Comments Off on Formabilio’s Duale Double-Faced Dining Table Can Change the Character of a Room With a Simple Move

Italian eco-friendly furniture brand Formabilio launched Duale, a double-faced wood and metal dining table designed by Luca Binaglia . Created to accommodate up to eight people, the contemporary and versatile table offers users the choice between the elegant simplicity of a veneered oak surface or a bolder and more intense colorful surface on the opposite side. To create the illusion of weightlessness, Binaglia set the two-faced tabletop on a curved tubular steel structure to give the table a distinctive geometric silhouette. + Formabilio + Luca Binaglia The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader. Want to see your story on Inhabitat ? Send us a tip by following this link . Remember to follow our instructions carefully to boost your chances of being chosen for publishing! Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “green furniture” , dining table , double faced table , Duale , Formabilio , Luca Binaglia , oak surface , oak table , reader submitted content , table , tubular steel

Original post: 
Formabilio’s Duale Double-Faced Dining Table Can Change the Character of a Room With a Simple Move

Next Page »

Bad Behavior has blocked 1894 access attempts in the last 7 days.