Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
Dream House in Athens, Greece by KIPSELI ARCHITECTS
January 24th, 2019 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: KIPSELI ARCHITECTS
The “Dream House” was designed with primary aim to materialize its owner’s dream. A dream of a home that will not only fulfil his functional needs and accommodate his family but also will satisfy his deepest desires, even those rising from his subconscious. On one hand his love for the old, the classic and the antiques and on the other hand his appreciation for contemporary architecture, simple geometric forms, the sense of purity and color.
The house incorporates architectural elements that one rarely finds in a one single residence, creating a two-fold scheme. The traditional architectural elements such as the pitched roof, the small openings, the high ceilings, the use of stone and the ornamented wrought iron railings, create a dialogue with their current architectural expression such as the terrace, the large glazed surfaces, the direct access to the landscape and the contemporary simplistic forms.
The house is divided into two separate volumes. The elevated traditional stone built part, which integrates the main entrance, the living area, the master bedroom and the attic and the contemporary white painted part that surrounds the stone built volume and incorporates the rest spaces of the house (kitchen, dining area, and children’s bedrooms). The merge of the classic and the modern elements is achieved by implementing a black and white palette to the whole residence and by the symbolic use of intense color in specific elements. This particular approach that refers to a child’s sketch contributes to overcome naive realism.
The project’s research is based on the continuous study of the owner’s interests, values, opinions, memories, attitude and lifestyle. The design was constantly evolving through an open dialogue and creative brainstorming between the owner and the architect. Through this psychoanalytical process the architect succeeded in subtracting hidden patterns from the owner’s subconscious so as to create an architectural design that could express his multifaceted personality. Conscious needs and preferences combined with subconscious vague images and desires take shape creating the feeling of a home that balances between realism and surrealism, the ideal and the dreamed.
As the concept of the house is based on the blend of traditional and contemporary architecture, the objective was to achieve a harmonic synthesis of the different materials and elements along with the composition of Western architectural influences within the Greek built environment, considering the owner’s past expatriation in the UK. The restricted size and narrow physical shape of the plot and small footprint leaded the architect to accommodate vertically all the facilities of the house. Additionally, in order to reflect the owner’s wish all the features of the house from large scale to smaller scale, from the roof, the staircases, the openings to the basins and doorknobs were custom made and designed. This task was quite challenging due to non-specialized construction methods and the scarce building materials that could be offered by the construction industry in Greece during the economic crisis.
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