Peter Yi – alone while together

Working with the larger UG1-wide topic of investigating domestic space, each student in our section proposed a design for a house where residents can find spaces comfortable for being alone, as well as spaces to be in the company of others when needed. The nuances of how each student addressed this topic came from two sources: a deeply considered study and re-thinking of a well-regarded precedent house, and a personal observation of the possibilities of domestic life both responding to and projecting forward from the current pandemic.

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Student Work

Erica Behm – “Unity through Disparity”

Throughout life, everyone is subconsciously gathering information that will influence the way they think at some point in their life. Architectural precedents have the ability to inspire in positive ways when unpacked. The Melnikov House, controversial when it was first built, is now praised for its out of the box construction. Copying the precedent, reimagining it, and taking a step back to abstract the precedent made it possible to create a house honoring the original architecture. Unity Through Disparity challenges what it means to live alone and together. Inspirational aspects from the Melnikov House such as curved colorful walls, diamond windows, and unique materiality developed a program to produce my house. Contrasting these components with straight walls, rectangle windows, and mainstream materiality the house was unified within the layering of these elements. Also contrasting small and large spaces allowed for connection through intersection of space. This generates a special spatial relationship that allows inhabitants to experience the space together as a whole but they can simultaneously be separated by a curved wall or a loft. Small private outdoor areas that are shaped by the facade authorize a questioning of what spaces are indoor or outdoor. The layered elements of color, curves, and window shapes produce dynamic, artistic, and lively volumes. Going through such a tough time in the world, learning how to live alone yet together, the vibrancy of The Melnikov House shows how the environment surrounding one can elicit an experience that sparks innovation.

Janeen Zheng – “Between In and Out”

Glenn Murcutt’s Marika-Alderton House completely unravels our understanding of what a house is. Its facade resembles more a warehouse than a residence, and can be completely opened up through a system of screen-less windows to accommodate for its tropical monsoonal climate. In my own design for our infill condition, I abstracted Murcutt’s ideas to explore the relationship between airflow and privacy. Each room can be completely folded open to give users a more airy and social environment, or kept shut to keep natural elements out and preserve privacy. This exploration shows how manipulating airflow alone is enough to compose a wide array of social conditions.

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