First Floor Penthouse

First Floor Penthouse

Architect
Z-A Studio
Location
Rabin Square, Israel
Project Year
1970
Category
Private Houses
Assaf Pinchuk

First Floor Penthouse

Z-A Studio as Architects

First Floor Penthouse extends the ephemeral relations between inside and outside. The primary asset of the apartment; its view onto the vast city hall square, is funneled in, creating a horizontal courtyard. This funneled landscape separates public from private, turning the bedrooms into a remote entity, when viewed from the open public space. The concept of the artificial landscape was carried through to shape the wall elevations and plans.


This project ties to a broader interest in the distinction between public and private in residential spaces. Behaviors and lifestyles that shape the residential environment are very difficult to reshape. We tend to be very attached to spaces we grew up in and the things we know and feel comfortable in. But if you follow the typology of living spaces you can see that one major thing did change in a way that everyone takes for granted now – the open public space of the living, dining and kitchen areas. This project examines the limits of this configuration which we have inherited from the ‘Loft’ concept of the 70’s.


The distinction between the public and private along with the apartment’s primary asset – its view onto the most urban and tainted views in Tel Aviv – Rabin Square, generated the idea of extending and stretching the outside as much as we could into the depth of the space. Conceptually we were thinking of it as a flipped penthouse or courtyard, where instead of letting in the light, air and landscape penetrate from above, it is now carving through the apartment from its side. This inverted courtyard separates between public and private and creates an effect that removes the private sections of the apartment beyond an outdoor space as if they are two separate houses. The space became an artificial extension of the outside, which generated the slanted walls “growing” out of the floor, the contrast between the indoor “artificial” gray and white and the outdoor “natural” wood and green and the continuous band of glass that moves the light into the depth of the space.

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