Saturday, 6 October 2012

UPDATING STORIES WITH CULTURAL FACTS (Any similarities to actual persons or places, alive or dead, real or ficticious is merely coincidental and the product of a feverish imagination)


Naked House.
When the family commissioned the new project they were looking for nature; they moved out of the city looking for some tranquility. However, since having built their home new families have also built homes, developing the land surrounding the house. The neighborhood has since been in constant growth, with an increasing yearly population. This development has caused the transformation from a rural, quiet and serene landscape into a semi-urban neighborhood.As a result, the relationship between the original house and the quiet rural landscape has been severed, and a new relationship with the residential neighbors has informally taken its place.
The family has also evolved since first moving into the home; the children have left the home to continue their studies at prestigious secondary schools, the grandmother has died of old age leaving the grandfather lonely and arthritic, and the parents are retired and leading personal lives full of independent interests and social activity. The children only come home when they are on holidays and the parents are currently enjoying their freedom to entertain.
Now that the father is retired -after spending most of his life outside the home- he has become an active part of the family again. Though he spends most of his time at home now, he hasn’t lost the habit of meeting with his ex-coworkers. He usually invites them to his home once or twice a week, thus returning some life to the home. The wife similarly has friends and co-workers over. Now, the house has been transformed into a space with renewed duality; the juxtaposition of the intimate/private and the social is changed but still present. The flexibility of privacy and space is still applicable, however the purpose has changed. The flexibility is no longer serving a set group of 6 people with varying needs. Instead the flexibility is responding to both the new needs of a household of 3, and the constant stream of visitors and guests. On the other hand, there is a degree of obstinacy in the family. The grandfather’s traditional customs have set the family at odds. It symbolizes a clash between the traditional and western influences in Japan. 
Another element of family life that has taken a new role in the home is the personal interest/activity. The grandfather has taken to the art of bonsai in his wife's absence, growing and keeping them in the house. This preoccupation with the art of Bonsai is consuming for the grandfather and serves as the third element of his family life. Similarly, the mother and father are now both retired, and when not entertaining, have personal pursuits of their own. The father has taken to games of strategy, loves historical documentaries, war stratagem, and has taken up his study of martial arts again. The mother has found more time for her love of watercolors and can often be found moving one of the empty bedrooms around the home, a make shift studio inside, looking for the best lighting and the best views. In summary; the family's private life has changed, the parents' jobs have been replaced with more social activities and the personal interests of the family have now taken on a more important and dominating role in their lives


It’s been 14 years since House in Lége exists. In order to reconsider its existence, the cultural changes has to be probed again. For this probe, coexistance will be our pathfinder and the keyword of the new end.

Social statues, economics, traditions in France are all changed in those 14 years. France had been in really hard situations, traces still remain. The civil unrest which started in 2005 is a good example for those traces, cars and public buildings were burnt in those cities that had the riots as worst. Why did this happen? Why did people burn cars, injure each other and create this chaos in their own countries? We can give you an answer: Lack of the coexistance mind. The triggering event of this sequence is a tragic story which shows us the classism fact in France. People who live in the suburbs of France are citizens from other descents and they have to live with discrimination.

The sister’s partner is a French man with North Africa descent who plays wind instruments. Without any kids, this little family-like couple keeps up with the modern France very well. As opposite, her brother is a tradition-directed clerk with a rabid wife and 2 little kids. The only thing that those siblings could only agree on is not laying a finger on their beloved nature in Lége, everything else has to change but they still have to stand together because they don’t have anybody else but themselves anymore. This time coexistance has to show itself in a more important scale than nature: Human relations. 


On November 22, 2011, the Mobius House experienced an electrical fire and burnt down, becoming uninhabitable. The Mobius family displaced and homeless, began looking for another house and quickly stumbled upon the Villa Bollen. The Villa Bollen, having recently been put on the market, had the basic visual connection with nature that Mobius Family desired. After much deliberation, the parents bought the house and moved in with their two children. 

However, the dynamic of the Mobius family has changed significantly. Both children are now adults, and both need spaces to work which are separate from the home. While the tradition in Holland is for the children to move away after reaching their 18th birthday, the parents of the Mobius Family have encouraged their children to stay nearby and utilize the expansive site. The parents feel that over the year’s technology and the city have separated their family from one another. They want to foster a closer relationship with their children, by having coffee together, going for bike rides around the expansive site, and teaching their children about the tulip gardens which the retired mother maintains. 

The children also want to stay close to their retired parents. They realize that this is a-typical, and presents a challenge to the architect who will need to consider aspects of both the live and work environment. The children are also extremely dependant on technology, (telephones, internet, skype) and admit to often working long hours into the night. They need space within the house, isolated from the rest of the home and their parents, who view the separation of live and work spaces as a necessity in the renovation. 

The family also requests that the renovation utilize natural lighting to create a closer relationship with nature. Since Holland is typically cloudy, the family requests the current dark interior of the original French house, to be subtracted from to create a practical renovation to the existing architectural language.


The accessibility is a concept that covers everything that goes around. Can be viewed as the "ability to access" and benefit from some system or some means.
It is very important to understand the cultural fact that over the last two decades, the view of accessibility has evolved greatly about how society views the disabled as well as laws and regulations that have been put in place to provide equality and so increase the level of accessibility. The cultural fact is that the history of accessibility over the last 15 years has gone from creating places for disabled, valid for a single user, to create inclusive settings, for all users regardless of their status, because of the change in cultural perception and understanding.
In Bordeaux we should apply that concept to make the home more accessible in its entirety, eliminating not only physical barriers but also proyect barriers, which are provided spaces for the disabled and spaces for the rest family. We have to understand the house as a fully accessible space now in the 21st century.
The house was designed primarily for the needs of a disabled person, but now the family’s needs have changed and there was a strong desire to modernize his home. There were several elements that were no longer appropriate for the life of the family such as, the platform and the peep-hole windows on the third level, which had come from Rem Koolhaas’ original project idea to create places for the disabled, valid for a single user, but now the users have no use for such things.
For example, It´s very important to make the library accessible to all. Also on the third floor the family need to make the view of the landscape clearer and more natural light in these rooms.


At the end of twentieth century, life becomes too hectic and fast in the cities. Time is money, and life is to earn money and spend it. If you are a tourist you must see all important monuments of a country in a few days. But now society is realizing that this is not a quality life.
            Enjoy something makes you happier than just to see a lot of things.  The experience of being a part of the production of a wine it's better than only drink it. Connect with a place, its culture and landscape, make it yours, transcends the complexity of wine and becomes a liquid memory.
            This is what the family has in mind when realized that the house designed by Souto de Moura was unique. Not only rent the house for normal tourism, but looks for some selected customers with a commitment with a project of life. They could come to the house some weeks year after year, learning about the process of making wine, culture and nature of the region as well. Of course, they could relax in the courtyard enjoying the landscape with friends, and wine inside everyone glass.
            Beyond the economical factors is the concern about sustainability of the nature,  a culture, a landscape, a way of life that must be recovered from tradition, there is no need to imagine a completely new life, just the revival of a life that always have been there.