A Comic Book Illustrator’s Quirky Live/Work Pad in Brazil
After purchasing his very first apartment—a 430-square-foot studio in Asa Norte in his hometown of Brasília—comic book illustrator Caio Gomez reached out to local practice Semerene Arquitetura to help him transform his new property into a multifunctional dwelling where he can relax, work, and entertain friends.
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"Gomez wanted a warm home filled with emotional elements capable of expressing his personality and stimulating his creativity," says founder and architect Clarice Semerene, who turned to Gomez’s illustrations for inspiration.
The redesigned space is influenced by the nostalgia and humor conveyed in Gomez’s comics with elements from the works of his favorite illustrators woven into the design concept.The layout was guided by the organized, yet unorthodox, framing of Gomez’s favorite cartoonist Chris Ware, whose color palette of hot and cold tones also influenced the apartment’s color scheme.
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The original apartment had a single, open-plan space with large windows that span an entire wall to bring in plenty of light.
Semerene maintained the openness and brightness of the original layout, but added a gray, wooden partition to separate the social areas from the bedroom and workspace. The divider, which includes openings with green, velvet curtains for privacy, acts as a media cabinet on the bedroom side while providing a wall for hanging art on the public side.
The kitchen and dining areas were redesigned as single, flowing space with a continuous, multifunctional cabinet that turns a corner to become a bookcase above the dining bench.
Concrete—which references the modernist architecture of Brasília and its buildings designed by Oscar Niemeyer in the 1960s—was used for the floors and walls, and contrasts the light wood cabinetry and shelves.
The apartment is furnished with vintage armchairs and objects from Gomez’s own collection, which sync wonderfully with Semerene’s redesign to enhance the home’s nostalgic air, and fun, laid-back atmosphere.
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