Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Heidi House,Uehara, Tokyo By Klein-Dytham

Heidi House is an extremely low cost studio and office space. Located in an up-central residential area of Tokyo, the house is set back from the adjoining site boundaries by 3 meters so no fire proofing of the external wall was necessary. This offset from the boundary line established the plan of the building.
A simple wooden framed structure was built and lined internally with plywood for lateral strength. An external layer of plywood was not needed structurally, so instead of this layer and a waterproof siding, we simply covered the structure with glass.
Long window openings were made in the plywood sheets in between the structural frame. The long thin nature of the structural frame inspired the 'Tyrollean' cutout shape.Internally the plywood skin was was painted white, while the wooden structural core of the building was wallpapered with black wallpaper.
The wooden ceiling structure was left exposed. Externally the house is EXTREMELY honest as it shows how the house was built. Seen obliquely from the side the window cut outs cannot be seen. Only when viewed straight on do the cutouts become visible.Internally the cutouts make the house walls look 'plywood' thin as there are no visible frames around the window openings. No insulation was used in the wall construction, the trapped air pockets used form a thermal buffer.
Many houses are made of wood in Japan, but because they are covered with metal or plastic siding, sometimes even fake bricks, you have no idea that the house is made of wood. It is very clear that this house is made of wood! The house has caused quite a stir in the neighbourhood, but the important thing is everyone seems to smile when they walk past!.....more

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