O House (White O)

Toyo Ito & Associates – White O (Ocho al Cubo house) – Weekend House in Marbella Chile, 2009

White O stands in an interesting context from a morphological point of view, as it develops following the gentle slope of the ground below. It lies on the natural flow of the slope, completely adapting to the context and involving a relationship of stringent connection between orography and architecture. This combination customizes and defines in a marked way the entity and the peculiarity of the project.

Toyo Ito's design approach aims to make known the relationship of continuity, visual and spatial, between the internal and external environment.
The interplay between the spaces is made particularly evident by the refined design choice of leaving a void in the center of the house, a void that becomes a real internal courtyard, devoid of coverage and a source of natural brightness for the interior. The respective rooms of the house are organized in a fluid and dynamic way on the basis of this subtraction of matter, an element that recalls the architecture of emptiness and transparency, typical of Japanese culture.
The central void takes on an unusual and irregular polygonal shape which becomes an imminent reference for the design of the vertical connection system, which presupposes an annular path that surrounds the internal courtyard. The slight flight of stairs therefore becomes an enveloping and nerve center element of the architectural complex that recalls the concept of "architectural promenade" by Le Corbusier, one of the most famous fathers of contemporary architecture. The roof garden and the design choice of the pillars that support the volume of the bedrooms also cite the latter's architectural style.

The spaces relating to the living and sleeping areas are organized purely on two floors, with an extremely versatile character, they express a free indoor-outdoor lifestyle defined mainly in reference to the central transition element. The house and the site are composed as a fluid progression of internal and external spaces with characters and orientations that gradually change. The raw but elegant style of the structure is expressed through the predominant use of exposed white reinforced concrete, used as an internal and external finish for floors and ceilings. To encourage the effect of "Spartan refinement" is added the choice of a paving in stone slabs with a base color very similar to concrete.

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House O (White O)


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