Koto Just Unveiled a Tiny Work Cabin That’s Cut Like a Diamond

Koto Just Unveiled a Tiny Work Cabin That’s Cut Like a Diamond

In an artful expression of wabi-sabi design, this charred-timber workspace promotes a deeper connection to the natural world.

Koto’s carbon-neutral cabins combine Japanese and Scandinavian design influences to remarkable effect, and the company just unveiled its latest offering: a geometric, modular workspace that reimagines where, and how, we work.

"We want to disrupt how we see the conventional office," says Zoe Little, founding partner at Koto. "It’s a space that enhances the landscape, giving people privacy with direct access to nature."

Koto’s charred-timber workspace is an exercise in wabi-sabi design that embraces imperfection amid the natural world.  The carbon-neutral structure is built from natural materials, and it can operate both on- and off-grid.

The cabin—commissioned by the New Art Centre, a gallery and sculpture park in Salisbury, England—is carved like an elegant gem, and it’s finished with meticulous attention to detail. The tiny office is clad in charred timber, and its geometry appears to subtly shift when viewed from each consecutive angle. Generous glazing comprises an entire facade, framing views of the gardens on the art center’s grounds.

"The distinctive geometric form took hours of meticulous detailing to create," says Koto.

Generous glazing comprises an entire side of the cabin, providing uninterrupted views of the surrounding landscape.

The cabin appears to shift shape when viewed from each new angle.

"The cabin acts as a functional piece of fine art, and sensitively pairs the outside surroundings with a multifunctional space that can be used by all," says the New Art Centre’s creative director, Lewis Dalton Gilbert.

A single doorway leads inside, where warm wood finishes reflect natural light.

The interior of the carbon-neutral cabin is clad with sleek wood finishes that refract light "to evoke a sense of shelter and warmth," says Koto cofounder Theo Dale. Inside, the faceted walls follow the form of the cabin’s exterior, composing a serene yet asymmetrical space. "Wabi-sabi is the perfect remedy to today’s hectic pace and obsession with perfectionism," Dale says.

Amid a global pandemic that’s turned homes into ad hoc offices, the design is a bid for better remote workspaces. Though the cabin currently stands as a one-off on the grounds of the art center, Koto plans to offer the design in a multitude of sizes that are on- and off-grid capable.

The cabin rests on the grounds of the New Art Centre in Salisbury, England, where it joins a multitude of sculptural artworks.

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