This home’s humble size and material makeup belie its marvelousness. Located in the northern Japanese town of Minoh, Osaka Prefecture, with a view of majestic Mount Aogai, the 87-square-metre house was designed on a tight budget with the aim of ushering in as much of the natural panorama as possible. To that end, its master stroke is a dramatic overhanging roof: Made of corrugated metal, lined in timber and integrating a massive polycarbonate skylight, it brings in the blue sky and lush vista while also creating an intimate in-between zone under its eaves.
This one architectural gesture establishes the building’s style based on an honest use of materials and a balance between opacity and transparency. Inside the one-storey home, which is divided by slender wooden beams, a number of nested rectilinear volumes, white-washed or clad in plywood, contain the kitchen, bath and other functions. Modern and solid, the structures make a wonderful contrast against the classic, airy envelope.
While it seems light and ethereal, the house is highly earthquake-resistant, thanks to the traditional wooden construction method employed in its making. A new expression in a remarkable setting, the project shows that greatness can be achieved with modest means.
Team Yasuyuki Kitamura
This home’s humble size and material makeup belie its marvelousness.