This project progressed through a close collaboration with the manufacturer – Arco Grating (UK) LTD, who specially developed the galvanized steel grating R3 – 25/33 X 11 used for the surfaces.
The steel mesh size derived from the need to comfortably accommodate bare feet without compromising the passage of light from the roof. The resulting solution condenses the cross bars while maintaining the usual distance between the baring bars. The galvanized finish allows for the even reflection of light throughout the space producing a visual moire effect and eliminating the need for additional finishes.
While the material was selected on the basis of its performative qualities, thus informing the design and its materiality throughout the process, the act of shifting the galvanized grating from its regular industrial context to a residential environment unfolded new possibilities in its use and applications.
The galvanized steel grating behaves like an elastic mesh stretching through the space.
The grating forms a variety of topographical conditions open to be accommodated without prescription.
Conceptual 30 study of the interlacing between the horizontal and vertical surfaces.
‘The workshop is a remarkable manipulation of solids, grids, light and shadow whose qualities and effects can’t easily be described. Its creases, folds and turns are the beginnings of a stairway to a post-Euclidean heaven.’
Working as a silversmith, our client needed more usable space in his industrial live/work shell but could not afford to loose any of the natural light provided by the existing sky-light. Solving this apparent contradiction became the driving force for the distinctive tectonics of this project.
The solution creates a continuous ‘landscape’ circumscribing a central void underneath the existing roof light. Made from industrial galvanized steel grating that at once transmits and deflects a large amount of light, the upward spiraling surface is guided and structurally supported by a truss structure that acts as balustrade. It offers a continuous succession of areas, each one staging a different activity, yet with no clear definitions.
Conceptually stretching the boundaries between work and live, cook and sleep into transitional zones, this structure offers the experience of a seamless, viscous unity. The ascension of a user through the continuous spiral trajectory produces a gradual shift towards increasingly private and personal spaces.
The new spaces also need to serve as a gallery for the display of the client’s crafted pieces. Visitors move upwards while examining the work at gradually progressive stages until reaching the final treasures that are displayed directly underneath the sky [light].
Hence ironically, the complex forms of the proposal, which emerged from a seemingly straightforward and functional brief, echo the social and religious concepts that inform the tradition of our clients’ millennial Japanese metal craft.
Images © Plasma Studio
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