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Monday, July 26, 2010

House 6

House 6 in São Paulo, Brazil by StudioMK27 - Marcio Kogan

Photographs are by Pedro Kok.

In response to the House 6 client's request for a covered outdoor space, architect Marcio Kogan (StudioMK27) decided to rethink the veranda of traditional Brazilian architecture. According to the architect the verandas are "covered linear spaces in front of the living room and bedrooms which act as intermediary spaces between the interior and exterior." Here that space is turned perpendicular to the living room, achieved by raising the bedrooms above and beyond the living spaces.

A look at the ground floor plan reveals how the house is walled off from its neighbors, affording it an internal focus. Access occurs on the east and movement to the house proper is along the veranda. The two parallel bars on the ground floor are perpendicular to this movement: the open-plan living area is the first and largest, the home office is located in the rear annex. Between the two is another carefully crafted outdoor space which becomes a continuation of the larger veranda and pool area when the living space's parallel glass walls are open.

One floor above are the bedrooms, accessed via a stair near the front door. They are laid out on a single-loaded corridor oriented towards the pool and garden below. Folding wood shutters extend the length of this facade, deep set in a large horizontal aperture that is activated by the movement of the shutters (visible in a video on the photographer's web page). The combination of the ground floor's sliding glass walls and both upper floor's wood shutters gives the appearance of a solid bar on slender pilotis above a continuous outdoor space.

House 6 is an excellent example of simplicity leading to complexity and richness: Each plan is straightforward, though obviously activated by the decision to turn the upper floors 90 degrees to below; materials are kept to a minimum: concrete, wood, stone; preference is given to horizontal surfaces, as the walls slide or fold to take advantage of the pleasing São Paulo climate. These combine with the treatment of the outdoor spaces to create a sanctuary in the big city, a place where distinctions between inside and outside fade away.

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