“A House Awaiting Death” on the outskirts of Ise, Japan has been created by Japanese studio EASTERN design office. It is an interesting project name for an owner who will die in 15 years. The house is elevated from the ground and capturing the sea view framed by the waving opening which was inspired by the blue butterfly.
The facade is is punctuated by a row of irregularly shaped windows, positioned higher or lower in the wall depending on where the client intends to sit and stand.
What we wanted to capture in this architecture was how to appreciate the appearance of waves. How can architecture showcase the waves and make them appear? It is not just a building with an ocean-view, but a place to observe the ever changing waves… We are not only designing a house, but are creating the port from which his liberated mind will depart across the ocean. This is what our work must encompass.
This is what the client ordered for his house. A view of the magnificent sea in the east where the sun rises. This is the land he chose to live out his final years. “The portion of the sea we have captured encompasses the peninsula that appears on both sides of the site.” Says Eastern Design office.
“He wants to anchor his life before he sails away from the sea coast flashing towards an unknown shore. This is the house we are going to design. How do we interpret his message? We are not only designing a house, but are creating the port from which his liberated mind will depart across the ocean. This is what our work must encompass. Therefore, this house sees waves.”
Eastern Design wants to make you think that the waves are a part of the interior of the house and not just another house which is open to the sea. “We were not satisfied to design a house with a sea view just because the seacoast is a mere 150 meters away. Ｔhe sea must be incorporated into the open space of the house.”
“This form draws in waves. This window captures waves. In this house. waves … are never the same throughout the day….” The design team wants to through their architecture expose the different moods that water and its waves bring.
“It is not a boundless steady blue ocean. The tide, bubbles, and grains of sand are constantly emerging. Unsteady waves, the solitude and calmness of a placeless and solitary man, these are what we want to capture in this new house. Everyone knows it is not a vague and limitless sea. It is also not a horizon. The sea is “the appearance of waves”.
“People want to know the meaning of the sea. The architecture will reveal this meaning.”
The site, facing east, is 440 m2 with a floor space consisting of 73 m2. The following is a brief list from Eastern Design of postures that a person assumes when watching the waves:
･Watch the waves while swaying in a rocking chair
･Watch the waves to observe them while eating and drinking wine.
･Watch the waves and sink into them while sitting on a couch.
･Watch the waves alongside your body as you walk around the room.
･Watch them while talking and rolling in laughter with friends.
･Watch the waves coming to water’s edge while reclining on the wooden lounge. These tangible activities and the places they occur governed the form of the architecture. The way to appreciate the appearance of waves can be designed based on this comprehensive drawing of the house. It was drawn in such way.
Photography by Koichi Torimrua
EASTERN Design Office
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