Niki-H – A small house designed for wine-making settlers in Hokkaido. The structure was created simply by installing a roof over the RC foundation deeply rooted underground. Structural calculations dictate the roof slope of a 60-degree-angle to withstand the snow load. It produced an equilateral triangle on the gable façade. The interior is filled with natural light from a big triangle window. This pit-house-like structure, adapting well to climate conditions in the snowy northern region, can be considered a model house in Hokkaido.
Architizer chatted with Takashi Seisho from SEISHO TAKASHI ARCHITECT’S STUDIO and Kazunori Wakai to learn more about this project.
Architizer: what inspired the initial concept for your design?
Takashi Seisho & Kazunori Wakai: The climate of Hokkaido when it is covered deep in snow, the great nature, and a minimal budget.
What do you believe is the most unique or ‘standout’ component of the project?
It is a simple structure guided by climate that has similarities with the ancient pit houses.
What was the greatest design challenge you faced during the project, and how did you navigate it?
Creating the best contrast between nature and architecture.
What drove the selection of materials used in the project?
The decision was based on careful selection of how the material responded to nature, life and time.
What is your favorite detail in the project and why?
The triangular prism in nature. Geometric shapes, derived from the climate, create a comfortable tension with nature.
How have your clients responded to the finished project?
They were very happy and have been living comfortably.
What key lesson did you learn in the process of conceiving the project?
We learned about the relationship between nature and architecture as well as the connection between history and architecture.
How do you imagine this project influencing your work in the future?
Several projects are underway in the area, Niki. We hope to improve this area by bringing together nature, vineyards, wine, and architecture.
Architect : Takashi Seisho + Kazunori Wakai / Structure Engineer : Takashi Baba / Contractor : Ohmoto corporation / Photographer : Satoshi Asakawa
For more on Niki-H, please visit the in-depth project page on Architizer.