Located on the ground floor of an old garden house, it’s a U-shape room with a full-faceted semi-circular window facing the back garden. Like many other 1930’s houses in French Concession in Shanghai, the house was originally built and inhabited by one bourgeois family, then was distribute to several families.
The 42sqm room was once the ballroom of the house and then a couple lived in it for decades, eventually moved out when they getting old.
In this project, Atelier tao+c seeks to explore the potential of living in a single room within an outdated house, for young couples to live together but didn’t deny the possibility of being alone.
The architect inserted a huge composite piece of furniture or a micro “furniturisation” architecture into the room. With the original wall, windows and ceiling intact, a geometric volume constructed of maple plywood occupies large part of the room, forming a free-standing internal structure. Built into the depth of the volume, embedded all functional requirements – accommodating shower, kitchen, closets, bookshelves, steps and conversation pits.The top of the “furniture” serves as the secondary floor, which accommodates the private spaces- bedroom and study.By opening up floor partially, formed the conversation between two levels.
Two different paths enhanced the connection – a wooden staircase leads from the living room to the bedroom, and a thin metal staircase that connects the study to the dining room. A 42sqm room results with a living room in 11sqm, kitchen and dining room in 20sqm, a bathroom in 4sqm, a foyer with wardrobe in 5qm, a bedroom in 15sqm and a study in 4sqm.
In this project, the function of walls and floors was replaced by furniture, which became a reduced kind architectural miniature..