Zero-energy tiny home has a near-invisible footprint

March 12, 2018 by  
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COULSON architects designed Disappear Retreat, a tiny, mirrored house that not only appears to disappear into the landscape but also boasts a near-invisible footprint. Created for “triple-zero living,” this prefabricated structure is an off-grid dwelling that’s zero energy, zero waste, and zero water. Built to the Passive House Standard, the 83-square-foot home needs no active heating or cooling systems even in extreme weather climates. Disappear Retreat’s minimal boxy form and design open the home up for a myriad of uses from stargazing in the boreal forests to suburban backyard sauna. Mirrored glass walls allow for privacy and full-height views and are triple-pane insulated with R-values of 32 to minimize energy consumption. The walls will also have a UV reflective coating to protect against bird and animal collisions. COULSON Architects have developed three retreat models with different interior layouts, including: Bed+Bath with a built-in sofa/bed and bathroom; Basic with an open-plan layout for multipurpose use; and Sauna that’s equipped with a sauna heater and built-in benches. Each module can fit on a standard trailer. Related: Incredible glass home stays comfortably snug even in extreme temperatures The airtight and super-insulated homes are powered by solar energy and feature an integrated plumbing system with gray, black, and potable water tanks. The units are also equipped with rainwater collection and composting systems. The Disappear Retreats are open for preorder enquiries now. + COULSON architects Via New Atlas Images via COULSON architects

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Zero-energy tiny home has a near-invisible footprint

Mirrored pavilion all but disappears into nature

January 2, 2018 by  
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Portuguese architecture agency depA has hidden a pavilion in plain sight. This camouflaged structure, clad in mirrored panels, appears to disappear into the lush green landscape and houses an impressive artwork for those who manage to find their way inside. Located in Porto’s Serralves Park, the aptly named Liquid Pavilion is a temporary installation belonging to the famed Serralves Museum, Portugal’s leading contemporary art museum. The mirrored Liquid Pavilion reflects images of the lake and lush foliage, rendering it nearly invisible to passersby. The architects designed the pavilion to evoke the form of the Serralves Museum, designed by Pritzker winner Álvaro Siza Vieira. ”The pavilion uses the Museum building and the Serralves Park as its raw material in different scales with one and the other,” wrote depA. “The pavilion’s design is a polygon extracted from the Museum’s layout, corresponding to one of its characteristic spaces — the bow window — whose classic hexagonal matrix is repeated and emerges at various times throughout the Park, both in the pavements and the landscape features.” Related: Tiny Mirrored Cabin Reflects the Ontario Landscape The pavilion’s placement in the landscape and use of reflective material makes it a visual bridge between the museum and park, at once relating to the museum with its form while simultaneously blending into the landscape. The pavilion’s “concave polygonal” layout makes the interior suitable for projecting films, like the currently featured piece “ O Peixe ” by Brazilian artist Jonathas de Andre . The pavilion was commissioned as one of the museum’s five temporary structures for the architectural exhibition Live Uncertainty, 32nd Bienal de São Paulo that runs through February 18. + depA Via ignant Images via José Campos

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Mirrored pavilion all but disappears into nature

Mirrored nativity in Italy invites passersby to reflectliterallyfor the holidays

December 29, 2017 by  
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The holiday season is a time for reflection—a tradition that Italian studio thesignlab took to its literal meaning with the installation of a nativity crib clad in mirrored panels. Located in the center of Tuscany’s Piazza San Michele, the contemporary pavilion’s use of mirrors invites passersby to observe and celebrate the diversity of the people around them. The reflective building, named Welcome Difference, appears to disappear in the historic plaza during the day but calls attention to itself at night thanks to a glowing light display. Welcome Difference was created as part of Andare oltre si può’s annual XMAS LIGHT program, now in its fifth iteration. The mirrored installation is a modern interpretation of the traditional nativity scene with the central figures of the story reduced to simple glyphs. At night, these characters and the accompanying symbols light up. Related: Mirror-covered ‘Mirage’ house disappears into the California desert “It is a magical nativity scene in which everyone can be reflected in the Nativity family,” said Welcome Difference creator Domenico Raimondi. “Visitors can reflect, reflect, look inside but above all see who stands next. With Welcome Difference, the differences are presented, flanked, shown and invited to reflect on the theme of Christmas . We firmly believe that we must not be afraid of differences and differences, especially in this period.” Welcome Difference was unveiled on November 24 and will be displayed until January 8, 2018. + thesignlab

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Mirrored nativity in Italy invites passersby to reflectliterallyfor the holidays

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