House H by Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects

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When I was a child, I used to lie on the floor in repose and stare up at the ceilings, imagining myself defying gravity and walking on the walls, free from the natural axis to make the vertical my ground plane. The novelty of spatial disorientation is fun and adventurous; while the earth’s pull still conquers our bodies, the physical environment that weighs x-, y-, and z-directions equally is not far off. House H, designed by Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects, relies on its unique set of eight Y-shaped frames to achieve such an effect. The wooden structures stand in place of walls to reduce the sensation of a definite xy-plane, and some are fitted with white floorboards to disguise sections as plans and vice versa. Other freeform elements such as a mezzanine and wooden access ladder accentuate the degrees of freedom and the wide expanse. The residence, located in Chiba, Japan, is thus transformed into a spatial playground, perfect for the young family that inhabits the two-story house.

Photographs © Fumihiko Ikemoto

Kimberly

Kimberly

Kimberly is a graduate from MIT's Department of Architecture, and has recently joined the publication team at MIT OpenCourseWare. While architecture remains her first love, her interests encompass literature – epic poetry and Medieval romances are her favorite – and also fashion.

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