Japanese architecture studio Kazuya Saito Architects has recently completed a single story house for a retired couple in Sendai, Miyagi, northeast Japan. The house is located in a dense residential area from the 1960s, and the brief specified privacy, abundant light and ventilation, and connection to a nearby residence.
In order to generate privacy, the architects located the house's regular, square volume in the middle of the site, subtracting a piece from each of the four sides: these become terraces, marking the entrance, a side door connecting to the main house, a washroom and a garden space dividing the bedroom and living spaces. Windows are placed in these subtracted spaces, allowing for daylight and generous ventilation while simultaneously offering privacy to the residents. The roof is sloped, mimicking the surrounding houses, and the building also features a skylight.
In the interior, the regularly distributed space is punctuated by small changes in each room, according to different specifications. "It is like African music which has a unique sound by playing various rhythm at the same time," states Kazuya Saito, "that is to say, the Yagiyama house is created as architecture by combining individual rhythm of each space." The expression of each space varies from exterior to interior, wooden tones to a flat white colour, and different ceiling inclinations. "I hope this architecture achieves a "fluctuation" of space," states the architect, "that allows for a creative and fascinating life."
Kazuya Saito Architects, Yagiyama House, Sendai, Japan
Architects: Kazuya Saito Architects
Structural design: Atsuhiro Nakahata, Yasushi Moribe
Builder: Kyoei Housing
Maximum height: 5,330 metres
Site area: 468,96 square metres
Built area: 137,47 square metres
Completion: August 2012