Minimalist timber home gracefully blends into the Austrian landscape

April 10, 2018 by  
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Lovers of minimalist architecture will swoon over Innauer-Matt Architekten’s Höller House, a beautiful modern home built mainly of wood in Austria’s picturesque Bregenzerwald valley. Set in a steep hillside, the dwelling combines inspiration from traditional farm buildings with a more contemporary vibe evidenced in its gabled form and restrained minimalist palette. Light timber is used throughout the home, inside and out, and is complemented by the structural framework’s exposed concrete columns. Built of timber felled from the homeowner’s forest, the 1,428-square-foot Höller House celebrates its timber construction with exposed wooden beams and surfaces left unpainted. Natural light fills the home through large openings and skylights , but privacy is also preserved by the slatted wooden facade and intentionally hidden entrance. Related: Handsome Austrian house is clad in a latticed facade made from local spruce To satisfy the client’s desire for a private outdoor space, Innauer-Matt Architekten added covered terraces that wrap around the home, a feature the architects call the “outermost shell.” The light-filled living and dining area serves as the inner “shell” and is organized around a core of exposed concrete comprising the staircase, toilet, and storage room. “This way we created a wide spectrum of translucence and transparency which we gradually and individually adapted to each room, its purpose and the level of desired intimacy, preventing unwanted insights while making beautiful outlooks part of every day life and living,” wrote the architects. + Innauer-Matt Architekten Images © Adolf Bereuter

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Minimalist timber home gracefully blends into the Austrian landscape

Swooping rooflines make this proposed Silicon Valley home a sculptural work of art

March 20, 2018 by  
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Cambridge-based design studio WOJR has proposed an unusual Silicon Valley home that stands out from the pack with its swooping rooflines and sculptural appearance both inside and out. Located in Los Altos, the House of Horns will be built on top of an existing foundation originally intended for an “elaborate Spanish style home.” In contrast to the former proposed designs, the new dwelling embraces minimalism with clean lines and a restrained neutral palette. Though the project has yet to be built, WOJR’s impressive renderings reach a level of photorealism that could easily fool the unknowing eye. The 8,500-square-foot home will be wrapped in black timber and topped by a sculptural metal roof that curves upwards in multiple directions, giving rise to the home’s name House of Horns. Ample glazing, from the skylights to the clerestories on the “horns,” ushers in natural light. Related: Charred timber home perched above Silicon Valley takes cues from nature In contrast to the exterior, the rooms are lined in light colored wood, pale concrete floors, and marble partitions. Full-height glazing frames views of greenery and the dips and swells of the roofline are expressed in the ceilings. On the ground level, communal areas are placed in the center of the building and flanked by bedrooms and bathrooms. The basement level below ground will also enjoy access to the outdoors with hobbit -like circular openings that open up to small courtyards. Construction on House of Horns is scheduled to begin this summer. + WOJR Via Dezeen Images via WOJR

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Swooping rooflines make this proposed Silicon Valley home a sculptural work of art

Riken Yamamoto unveils green-roofed designs for Taiwans Taoyuan Museum of Art

March 20, 2018 by  
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Taiwan’s Taoyuan City is often passed over for its glitzier neighbor Taipei , but a new proposed art museum could give the city an extra boost in attracting new talent and tourists. Kanazawa-Based Riken Yamamoto & Field Shop unveiled competition-winning designs for the Taoyuan Museum of Art that comprises a pair of dramatically sloped green-roofed buildings. Dubbed “The Hill,” the multipurpose art museum will be located in the heart of the city and serve as a new community hub. Created in collaboration with Joe Shih Architects, THR ARTECH, Ove Arum & Partners, Nagata Acoustics, and Izumi Okayasu Lightning Design, Riken Yamamoto’s the Hill proposal will be constructed within a 9.8-plot split in two by the elevated high-speed rail line. The nearly 34,000-square-meter museum will be located within striking distance of Taoyuan International airport . Its dramatic form responds directly to the competition brief, which specified a sculptural museum appearance “mimicking a piece of artwork.” Related: Shimmering bamboo-shaped skyscraper to rise in Taipei In addition to hosting artwork and providing an incubator space for local emerging artists, the museum will double as a new public park and the sloped green roof will be made accessible by way of a zigzagging ramp. Boxy white pavilions punctuating the sloped roof will house retail. The project is expected to catalyze economic development in the area as well as the addition of new artists’ residences. + Riken Yamamoto & Field Shop Via ArchDaily Images by Riken Yamamoto & Field Shop

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Riken Yamamoto unveils green-roofed designs for Taiwans Taoyuan Museum of Art

Floating prefab timber cabins let you sleep on a lake in the south of France

March 6, 2018 by  
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These ten prefab hotel suites, docked on a marine reserve near Avignon, France, are wrapped in timber screens that allow them to blend into the beautiful surroundings. Atelier Lavit designed the floating structures – which were constructed off-site and reconstructed on-site over a period of three months – with large skylights and wraparound porches so that visitors can get truly immersed in nature. Each of the units of this sustainable getaway is connected to the mainland via a wooden ramp. The rooms are either circular or square-shaped and built using natural paneled wood . The team designed the prefab suites to be easily transported and assembled on-site with reduced installation costs and low environmental impact. Related: Compact floating cabin pops up in extreme remote locations Large sliding doors and overhead skylights fill the spaces with natural light and offer sweeping views of the surrounding landscape. Wraparound decks are enveloped in timber screens which provide additional privacy. + Atelier Lavit Via Apartment Therapy  

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Floating prefab timber cabins let you sleep on a lake in the south of France

Add a skylight to any room with these amazingly realistic LED panels

April 15, 2017 by  
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Installing a skylight in a room with little light or a lack of windows can now be as easy as hanging a picture, thanks to the amazing faux skylights by Simar Design . The beautiful panels can bring the look of the sky – be it day or night- into any room. Illuminated with LED lights , the panels can accurately imitate the color, light and look of any time of day by coupling lights with imagery from leading photographers. Simar Design came up with the faux skylight concept when thinking about how daylight can have a profound effect on mood and well being. With many studies linking nature with the effect of relaxation, Simar sought to bring nature inside. The target audience for the screens was to those who are unable to get outside, such as the terminally ill in hospitals, or the immobile in retirement homes. Exposure to blue sky scenes with bursts of fluffy clouds, fronds of green foliage or vines of flowers could help foster the healing process, and give hope to patients. Related: Studies Prove that Desk Plants Can Improve Worker Concentration and Productivity The panels are powered by LED technology , combined with stunning imagery by leading photographers. Pieces can vary in size to suit any room, and last from 50,000 to 100,000 hours. That’s 20 to 40 years of use at 7 hours a day. The best part, is the imagery is completely changeable, and can be switched out at a moment’s notice, making it versatile for any needs. Simar Design’s faux skylight can brighten a drab hotel room, add a place of contemplation for patients, create a imaginative scene for kids, or simply bring a bit of nature to a dark room. + Simar Design Via V2

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Add a skylight to any room with these amazingly realistic LED panels

Students collaborate with starchitect Daniel Libeskind to design university building

March 28, 2017 by  
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Dramatic interlocking volumes and sharp angles define the new green-roofed Central Building at Leuphana University in Germany. Studio Libeskind designed the project in collaboration with students at the university, where Libeskind works as a part-time professor. The result is a distinct zinc-clad building that will serve as an incubator for new ideas, innovation and research. The 139,930-square-foot building, located on the university’s main campus in the southern part of Lüneburg, integrates a Research Center, a Student Center, spaces for seminars and an auditorium into a single structure. Interlocking volumes facilitate cross-disciplinary interaction and collaborative learning. Related: Daniel Libeskind unveils spectacularly green physics center at Durham University Upon entering the building, visitors are greeted by a swooping triple-height atrium awash in natural light coming through a half dozen skylights . Stairs and bridges puncture the volume and communicate the complexity of the space. The cafeteria and workshops are located on the ground floor, labs and offices occupy the upper floors, and the three-story Seminar Center with a curved roof forms the main entry. Exposed concrete and canted walls are combined with smoked oak parquet throughout the building, and red-painted walls provide way-finding and orientation. Related: Daniel Libeskind unveils design for the new green-roofed Lithuanian Modern Art Center in Vilnius The building will operate at zero emissions thanks to its remarkably efficient design and the use of renewable energy sources. Sustainable design features include a green roof, a grey water system and an innovative Cobiax structural system. + Studio Libeskind + Leuphana University

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Historic Dutch nursery transformed into stunning solar-powered home

March 21, 2017 by  
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A stunning solar-powered home has emerged from the bones of a former school for infants in Leiden, the Netherlands. Design firm ATELIER SPACE completed the beautiful adaptive reuse project , taking care to preserve historic elements while imbuing fresh contemporary touches to the renovation. Energy efficiency was a major focus in the redesign, which includes energy-saving features such as improved insulation, underfloor heating, and home automation. Built in 1925, the historic brick nursery was constructed with great open spaces and tall ceilings filled with natural light from skylights and large windows. These features lend themselves easily to reuse as a residence and the architects made no major changes to the overall structure of the building. A single classroom, for instance, were repurposed into three bedrooms. The architects also preserved the tiled floors in the corridor, original doors, and wooden rafters to maintain a connection to the building’s past. While the tiled corridor was kept intact, the architects replaced the other floors with insulated concrete with underfloor heating . The roof and glass windows were also bolstered with improved insulation to minimize heat loss. A water and air-based heat pump heats and cools the building. Solar panels provide electricity. JUNG KNX home automation allows the homeowners to control aspects of the house, such as lighting and the shutters, remotely from their phones. Related: Cigarette factory reborn as a light-filled city hall in Brussels The spacious 694-square-meter home includes five bedrooms, multiple bathrooms, a media room, workout room, and an open-plan living room, kitchen, and dining area housed in a converted gymnasium. The school’s old playground was transformed into a sunny courtyard with plastered brick banks and planters around a “conversation pit.” The second floor contains a small guesthouse. + ATELIER SPACE Via ArchDaily Images via Brigitte Kroone

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Former Patagonia CEO announces largest land donation in history

March 21, 2017 by  
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Land conservation in Chile could reach a new high with a recent pledge to conserve 11 million acres of wilderness as national parks . As part of the proposal, former Patagonia CEO Kris Tompkins gifted one million acres to the country in what her organization, Tompkins Conservation , says is the “largest land donation in history from a private entity to a country.” Tompkins and Chilean President Michelle Bachelet signed an agreement to add the one million acres of land from Tompkins Conservation to around 10 million acres of federal land to create a large system of parklands. Under the pledge the government will establish five new national parks. The land under the proposal is three times the size of Yellowstone National Park and Yosemite together. Volcanoes, coastal areas, and forests will be protected under the pledge. In a speech, the president said, “We are bequeathing to the country the greatest creation of protected areas in our history.” Related: Patagonia launches campaign to protect Utah’s Bears Ears National Monument This historic proposal is a step to start a Route of Parks, or a 17-park network, stretching from Cape Horn up to Puerto Montt to conserve Chile’s incredible wilderness and offer outdoor destinations for travelers. The parks could potentially yield around $270 million each year from ecotourism , and could employ as much as 43,000 people, according to Tompkins Conservation. The organization has also committed to start a Friends of National Parks foundation in Chile to support the Route of Parks. Kris said her late husband, conservationist Douglas Tompkins, who passed away in 2015, inspired the pledge. She said, “I know that if Doug were here today, he would speak of national parks being one of the greatest expressions of democracy that a country can realize, preserving the masterpieces of a nation for all of its citizenry.” Via Tompkins Conservation and The Guardian Images via Tompkins Conservation Facebook

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Former Patagonia CEO announces largest land donation in history

Small and windowless garage in Lisbon transformed into an elegant modern loft

February 8, 2017 by  
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Living in a garage isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but an open-minded couple manages to pull it off with style in Lisbon. Local design studio Fala Atelier was asked to convert a 200-square-meter windowless garage into the couple’s new abode. The result is a dramatic transformation from a lifeless gray garage into a bright and contemporary house that still retains a parking spot for the couple’s car. Since the architects weren’t able to add windows on any of the walls besides the entrance, they painted the walls white and created an open-plan living area to create a sense of spaciousness. The ceiling is also painted white and punctuated with large redesigned skylights. The floor is covered in polished concrete to create a neutral base to balance the vibrant pops of colorful furniture. Decoration is kept to a minimum to reduce clutter and large aquamarine curtains allow the homeowners to cordon off spaces as needed. Related: Old garage is transformed into a daylit, treehouse-like library “The proposed intervention intended the clearest reading possible of the existing structure, emphasising its strength,” write the architects. “While the garage was careless and grey, the house is clean and white; its materiality is flat, its light is abstract.” The L-shaped home is entered through a long hallway that then opens up to a large living area. Two bathrooms are tucked behind a curved wall built to replace a broken corner. Limited furnishings and freestanding elements allow the homeowners to easily rearrange the interior space. + Fala Atelier Via ArchDaily Images © Fernando Guerra | FG+SG

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Small and windowless garage in Lisbon transformed into an elegant modern loft

A beautiful perforated facade filters natural light into this office building in Rio de Janeiro

November 4, 2016 by  
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The open-plan floors of the building are supported by concrete waffle slabs, peripheral columns and load-bearing walls. All the installations and structural elements are distributed along the perimeter of the building. Related: Tivoli Eco Residences Leave a Light Footprint on the Coast of Northern Brazil The facade of the building comprises three different layers-a lattice of perforated aluminium, a green buffer and soundproof windows. It semi-transparent quality allows natural light into the interior and is aided by a large skylight . The library is separated by glass partitions that filter in daylight. + Bernardes Arquitetura Via Archdaily Photos by Leonardo Finotti

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A beautiful perforated facade filters natural light into this office building in Rio de Janeiro

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