After falling in love with Japanese design and culture during their travels, a couple of conservators enlisted Polish architecture firm Medusa Group to create a backyard garden retreat that pays homage to the Land of the Rising Sun.
Having worked with the clients on a house design a few years ago, the architects were familiar with the couple’s priorities and tastes.
"As a result of many conversations and meetings, we decided to create a simple and small structure, which will act as a sculpture in a garden, a hermitage, guesthouse, or, as of recent, a place of seclusion during a pandemic," explain the architects, who completed the Origami House this year.
Local regulations permitted the construction of a small backyard building so long as the structure featured a sloped roof. Sensitively scaled so as to not detract from the main house, the compact retreat distinguishes itself with an all-black multifaceted exterior inspired by origami art.
The light-toned interior was created as a contrast to the facade and lined with whitewashed plywood—a nod to the fusuma paper-wood sliding doors found in traditional Japanese architecture.
The 475-square-foot dwelling includes two floors. One the ground floor is a living space centered on a wood-burning fireplace with a kitchenette to the side. Above, a compact loft houses a skylit bedroom and bathroom.
"The building is also intended to serve a decorative function, as a sculpture in the home garden space," note the architects.
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