Smart spaces. Storage at home.
“The interior is formally determined by integrated furniture able to encompass different functions and characteristics. The pieces of furniture act as spatial boundaries. The shapes of the different forms of storage are conceived based on the type of item they are to contain. Their positioning depends on how easily they need to be reached.”
Developed as a four-handed project by ATOMAA and Gian Paolo Venier Design, this Milanese apartment of 150m2 draws on the identity of the building in which it sits, while re-interpreting its early 20th century atmosphere.
Fully tailored to the needs & tastes of the owner, a young professional, the intervention redefines the original layout - which counted 3 bedrooms, a small sitting room and a studio - and gives birth to a net distinction between the living and the sleeping areas. The new environments - a bedroom, a large lounge and a studio/guest room - benefit from the renovated arrangement in order to accommodate a contemporary lifestyle. Fur-thermore, thanks to an equipped entrance, the bedroom assumes its true private dimension, enriched by an en-suite bathroom.
The recovery and restoration of vintage materials – such as the parquets of the living area - are accompanied by a meticulous research about coatings and joinery with a contemporary style, yet remain in tune with the original character of the building. The floor - made of terrazzo alla veneziana - runs from the entrance to the kitchen and features brass inserts, which are also evoked in the furnishings and in the bathroom complements, becoming one of the ‘aesthetic trait d’union’ of the apartment. The use of ‘made to measure’ wall cabinets results in large hidden equipped volumes with decorated surfaces - vertical wooden slats - leaving the stage to more intimate furnishings and objects.
Inspired by the curious and cosmopolitan spirit that characterised the beginning of the twentieth century in Europe, the interior design presents a stratification of objects that span from Déco vases to chairs in Indonesian woven straw, to artisanal Italian and Chinese products, passing through vintage lamps from the 40s and rosewood sideboards and cabinets from the 60s.
TRAITS D’UNION has been described as “a cultural and temporal melting pot, enriched by precious fabrics and custom furniture and accessories. For an interior of vintage charm, that does not renounce to a younger and more contemporary attitude.” Olga Mascolo, Domus
Place: Milan, Italy
Architectural Design: ATOMAA Design Team: Tommaso Meena
Furniture and Light Design: GPV Design
Light Consultant: David Scognamiglio
Photography: Alberto Strada
General contractor: EdilBM Group srl
“Terrazzo alla Veneziana”: A&L Croci snc Bathrooms: New Milestone Design
Air condition: ClimaB
“The living area is divided into three different areas, one with fixed cupboards, one with sliding and tilting elements and one furnished unit. A high degree of flexibility allows the home to change depending on the time of the day and the use of natural light as well as the desired purpose of the individuals units.”
The apartment sits in a recently revitalized area of Milan, as part of the project designed to regenerate the Darsena basin. In a very touristic context such as this, in the area surrounding Via Savona, Tortona and Darsena, the intervention will have a receptive function. It is, therefore, to be perceived as a project that re-qualifies as a property investment in order to cater for the short and medium term lease market.
Short or medium term tourists require homes that can guarantee the same comfort as a stable home. In order to provide as much free space as possible, we decided to place the various service areas, such as the kitchen, entrance and bathroom, on the edges of the main inhabitable space and furthest from the light provided by the large windows. It is from these fixed points where we began to add sliding movable elements which guarantee varied spatial combinations depending on the varied desired uses.
From the outset, we wanted the design to incorporate the sense of magic and playfulness in a confined domestic space.
From a formal perspective, the project contains two different storage types: fixed and mobile. The fixed storage elements contain service spaces and functions such as a wardrobe, a kitchen and a laundry. The movable elements contain temporary functions such as a study area and the breakfast/lunch table, and a walk-in closet.
In any ‘Micro Living' apartment, to ensure the comfort given by the presence of interchangeable spaces, it is important to work with the concept of TIME.
Only a few spatial scenarios can happen at the same time or within close proximity to another, most of which depend on, or benefit from, the changing of natural light within the apartment. Many household activities are regularly carried out in fairly ordered succession, depending on the time of the day.
Desire and necessity have led to a home which changes ‘magically’, with a series of scenarios, one different from the next. These spatial organisations seem to open and close, depending on the hours of day and natural light radiating into the apartment.
The inner atmosphere is formally defined by the stylized unit of fixed furnishing elements, capable of incorporating different functions and features within its compositional logic. The furnishing elements also take on other roles: they act as spatial limits and fixed scenes, but also serve as a tool box of functional elements which allow the user to benefit from very compact storage within the confinements of contemporary urban living. The project strategy aims at solving technical, functional and ergonomic issues with an inclusive logic within fixed and movable furnishing elements in order to highlight the breadth and interchangeability of the main inhabitable space.
All the furniture is custom designed and handmade by a local carpenter in his small workshop, highlighting precision while glorifying the imperfections of handcraft.
Tipology: Micro Living
Place: Milan, Italy
Architectural Design: ATOMAA
Photography: Luca Broglia
General contractor: Lorenzo Bottoni Carpenter: Giuseppe Marra
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