PINE CONCRETE HOUSE
Mayu Takasugi, Johannes Berry
Paarl, South Africa
A one-bedroom house, connected through a terrace, to an existing multi-generational family home.
With design provision made for the eventuality of barrier-free living, it is a place for the client to grow old, close to his loved ones.
The building is situated on a hill.
The parts of the building in contact with the ground comprise concrete, the parts that are not, comprise the unaltered repurposed timber formwork panels, that were used to cast the concrete.
The timber formwork gives texture to the exposed concrete, and the exposed concrete gives patina to the timber formwork.
The formwork panels shape the exposed concrete spaces and use, and the other way around. This interrelationship gives expression to the building.
For example, the curved timber niche, with skylight, is the expression of repurposing the formwork used to cast the curved concrete stairwell.
The stairwell is curved to allow for the eventuality of a stairlift and has a skylight to naturally bring in light to the underground section of the space.
The other way around, the concrete canopy above the main entrance, is the expression of repurposing the staircase’s timber landing as formwork.
Furthermore, a door opening in one of the concrete interior walls, which is filled in with a formwork panel, is the expression of the construction process.
The contractor realized, that the thickness of a formwork panel, was similar to that of the concrete interior walls.
So, instead of boarding off the openings for casting, the contractor cut the formwork panels in height, to then use as infill in casting the door openings.
This altered the design and strategy of where to repurpose the formwork panels, which found expression by leaving one opening filled in.
After moving in, the client wanted an extra closet, he copied the language of the timber formwork to build It himself.
The building is the embodiment of how it came to be, it reveals in its aesthetic its own history.