A69 Architects were called upon to match concrete with concrete for this family home in Prague. Helping block the gaze of the high-rises next door, the roof slab of the EggO House, like an artificial horizon, was born.
The ovoid concrete hole not only gives the house its name—after all, it is an egg-shaped O—but it gives clear visual definition to an outdoor space that risks being dominated by the hulking tower blocks next door.
The roof weighs an incredible 120 metric tons. All the concrete was poured onsite, and the whole thing is held aloft by thin steel beams. The backyard is the same plot of land in which EggO resident Tomáš Ru˚žičká once played as a child.
Johana works at home in the living room defined as much by its cinderblock wall as by the light coming in through recessed windows above. The house, while open, fluid, and defined by the circular outdoor space at its center, is also well partitioned, allowing both Johana and Tomáš to maintain private home offices.
The EggO House’s inner glass wall is sealed like the windshield of a car, attached to
steel columns that also support the massive concrete roof. Outside, the lawn might be under the watchful gaze of the tower blocks across the street, but the concrete horizon of the roof affords a slight screen—and a psychological barrier—against prying eyes.
At night, the curved geometry of the house becomes even more clear. Lit from within, the house stands out against its backdrop of architecturally unexciting houses. Here, Johana and Tomáš look out onto an enclosed yard, a private space cut out of the bigger city.
The tension between old and new is easy to see in Prague, where Art Deco housing butts up uncomfortably with utilitarian tower blocks left behind after the Soviet invasion of 1968. Even the homeowners’ attitude reflects this. “I’m used to that antique style and always thought I would live like that,” Johana Ru˚žičková explains. “I know that conflict.”