2000 – Small House – Kazuyo Sejima

Small House is a tiny private residence designed by  Kazuyo Sejima (SANAA), in the affluent Aoyama district of Tokyo. Situated on a small infill lot measuring 60 m2, Small House is a bold example of architectural ingenuity amongst the dense similitude of the surrounding urban landscape. Completed in 2000, Small House is representative of simplistic design, encompassing a complex logic predicated on the principles of function, place, culture, and the intimacy of home. Small House delicately balances itself within the urban fabric of Tokyo; a representation of clean, modern architectural form imbued with layers of history, culture, and the embodiment of life.

The House is a small rectangular tower, its edges and surfaces skewed on the diagonal to create a dynamic geometrical shape. Its form provides unique contrast to the neighbouring residences; their planar surfaces demarcating the vertical and horizontal planes in the masses. It provides the outward semblance of bold form but maintains the identity and character of a private home; unique, individual, proportionately-scaled and intimate. The striking appearance of Small House is a testament to Kazuyo Sejima’s propensity towards form-finding as the fundamental means by which to achieve the embodiment of meaning, identity and presence in architecture. In her words, Sejima states that “architectural design can only proceed through forms. Making architecture, if we can say this without fear of being misunderstood, is surely a question of creating new forms … Designs are recognized by their forms, and moreover, the public or social aspect of architecture resides precisely in an understanding of the architecture and its relations to the structures surrounding it”.


Name: Small House│Type: Residential│Architect: Kazuyo Sejima│Completed: 2000

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