Architectural Spaces For Living And Working On Art

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Outpost by Olson Kundig Architects, Idaho

Architecture and art production have been inextricably linked since primitive humans began to paint in their caves. Artists need large, functional work areas that don’t encumber or restrict their creative endeavors—particularly when they’re creating, sleeping, and living in one space.

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01-390 House by Philippe SAMYN and PARTNERS, architects & engineers, Brussels, Belgium

The prominent minimalist and land artist Walter de Maria’s studio in Manhattan has just hit the market—asking price: $25 million. A former power company substation, it has many of the attributes artists desire in their live/work situations: large ceilings ranging between 13 to 25 feet; a vast open floor plan that can fit monumental sculptures or paintings; large windows that flood the space with natural light. A bathroom, kitchen, and bedroom, while modest, gave De Maria an area of respite from his daily artistic undertakings.

Continue reading here.

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Hendee-Borg House by William O’Brien Jr. LLC, United States

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Illuminated Architecture

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Chanel HK LED Concept Design by 2×4, Inc., Hong Kong

As daylight fades and nighttime begins to envelop the city, the built environment transforms into a hulking monochromatic whole. This dance of night and day has inspired poets and artists for centuries, and—with the advent of technology—has motivated architects and designers to experiment with incorporating lighting systems into the facades of their buildings.

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Rising Moon by Daydreamers Design, Hong Kong

One way they do this is through LEDs. Developed in the 1960s, LEDs (short for light-emitting diodes) function as a semiconductor light source. Essentially electrons are passed through a device and allowed to recombine at certain points, which releases energy from photons. This effect is called electroluminescence, and it produces different color lights depending on the energy of the photon. The color and duration of light can be controlled by the bandwidth of energy sent through the device, giving LEDs one of their hallmark attributes: the ability to be modified easily.

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The SOL Dome by Loop.pH, Michigan City, Indiana

The Honeycombed Architecture Of Buildings That Take Inspiration From The Bees

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Image via.

Architects often look to the natural world for inspiration. Sometimes this can result in a project that plays with scale of natural phenomenon, such as Beijing’s Water Cube, which was based on the shape of water bubbles. Other times it can be a more abstract appropriation, as in the case of Bjarke Ingels’s new apartment complex design in the Bahamas, “The Honeycomb.”

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The Honeycomb by BIG, Bahamas, Nassau. Image via.

The design of the project did not call on the geometry of the honeycomb for structural integrity. Instead, the hexagon pattern supplied a motif for the facade, adding some visual interest—and character—to the building’s typical rectangular form. Each apartment also has an ample balcony that includes a pool, providing the inhabitants with a semi-private outdoor area from which to enjoy the view of the ocean and tropical weather.

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The Crowning Achievement Of A Penthouse Addition

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Penthouse auf dem Hochbunker by Amort Architektur, Hamm Westfalen, Germany

Robin Venturi once said that “less is a bore.” Well, in New York City less is plainly not as profitable as more. Developers and architects have taken to pushing against space limits placed on projects by landmark or historical status. One way they do this is by crowning existing buildings with penthouse additions—a trend that has exploded as of late, according to a recent article in The New York Times. penthouse penthouse1

Out Of Sight by Spaced Out Architecture Studio, London, GB

Of course, these additions instantly become the most exclusive and expensive part of the development due to the views and sunlight afforded to the top floor. But they also give architects the chance to make a heroic, dramatic statement. Take Shigeru Ban’s recent proposal for a two-story white-metal glass cantilevered addition to the 132-year-old Cast Iron House in downtown Manhattan, which was unanimously approved by theLandmarks Preservation Commission: penthouse4

A rendering of Shigeru Ban’s penthouse addition to the Cast Iron House. Photo: Hayes Davidson via The New York Times

This practice of placing a building on top of a building takes place all over the world. Sometimes these projects become memes, as was the case for a literal mountain home built on top of an apartment building in China: penthouse5

Image via The Daily Mail.

The story of how a connected Chinese government official built the home over six years bounced around the Internet for a few weeks. And why not? The images are pretty incredible. In fact, the juxtaposition of new and old in these projects is stunning no matter the level of contrast.

Continue reading here. penthouse2 Bondi Penthouse by MHN Design Union, Sydney, Australia

Architectural Projects That Have You Walking On Glass

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Jellyfish House by Wiel Arets Architects, Marbella, Spain

Integrating glass into structural flooring lends an air of drama and tension to architectural projects. From a young age, our interactions with the material are often fraught with danger. Everyone has broken something made of glass, confronting its physical properties, and hazards, head on. Glass is brittle, and when it shatters, it produces a multitude of sharp tiny pieces that are impossible to clean. Clear and nearly invisible, the shards inflict pain and suffering to various degrees.

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PENTHOUSE PPDG by HERNANDEZ SILVA ARCHITECTS, Guadalajara, Mexico

It is clarity and invisibility that make glass the perfect material for many situations, especially for uses that are not load bearing, like a window or façade. It gets trickier, though, when it’s incorporated into something you want to walk or stand on. Regardless of its physical limitations, architects love to play with glass in their designs. The 17 architects below chose to use it as flooring.

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Row House in Goeblange by Metaform atelier d’architecture, Goeblange, Luxembourg

 

Nothing Better Than Manifestly Magnificent Cantilevers

cantilever Villa Amanzi by Original Vision, Phuket, Thailand

Ever filled out an online survey that asks the question which super power you would rather have, flying or invisibility? For architects this question probably seems silly, for employing the cantilever in their designs does both those things. It gives buildings volumes that appear to be levitating, walls that disappear, and (bonus!) views that extend to the horizon. cantilever1

Balancing Barn by MVRDV, Thorington, Great Britain (via future-predictor) cantilever3

Statoil Regional and International Offices by a-lab, Bærum, Norway

The physics of the cantilever are pretty simple: One end is anchored and the opposite juts dramatically into space. The structure of the building no longer has to rely on the exterior walls for support; it can essentially disappear. Continue reading here. cantilever2

Caterpillar House by Sebastián Irarrázaval, Santiago de Chile

An Exemplary “Model House” In Seoul, Korea

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Xi Gallery by Ken Min Architects, Seoul, Korea

The transitory nature of temporary buildings doesn’t always diminish the attention the architects give to the project’s design. The Xi Gallery by Ken Min Architects is an example of a specific type of building in Korea known as a “Model House.” Real estate developers use the structures to display the amenities of their building projects to potential buyers.

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Xi Gallery by Ken Min Architects, Seoul, Korea

Economically constructed out of reusable steel and modular panels, the buildings are typically torn down in three to five years. Ken Min Architects and their client used the opportunity to center the project on a public garden accessible to the surrounding neighborhood, addressing the area’s need for available green space. The building also incorporated an auditorium and educational rooms for programs open to the public.

Continue reading here.

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Xi Gallery by Ken Min Architects, Seoul, Korea