house-T, Miyazaki, Japan
Tsukano Architect Office

This scheme was planned for downtown Miyazaki, located in southern Japan. The road in front is busy and noisy, and there are tall buildings for residence at the south. Considering all these factors, Tsukano came up with a brilliant idea to harmonise with the circumstances - having a piece of white plate wrap the whole home space. With the white plate, the house can be separated from the outer crowdedness, while sunlight is allowed to come into the courtyard, which makes the inner space warm and bright.

As you enter the internal room, which is positioned half-underground, by passing through a dim "roji", starting from a narrow gap in the white monolith, there is a silent space surrounded by light. There, a big window reveals a courtyard called a "niwa" concealed behind the blank facade. The “niwa” was designed so that it provides natural lighting for the interior and it's overlooked by every room. A "niwa" in Japan is different from the Western courtyard, as it is meant to be a solemn place where gods and men are united. It is a Japanese tradition to let the sunlight come into a room through the "niwa". It is an actualisation of god's grace.

The concrete dining table meets the white-pebbled courtyard floor at the same level, a flowing continuity barely interrupted by a large glass pane. And more, concrete walls and surfaces are balanced with light-coloured timber panels, warm ceramics, white plaster and glass. The design exudes the calm and peacefulness of its purpose and is an interesting contemporary hybrid between a traditional Japanese style and Western standards.

House-T was completed in October 2012.

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