Ferson house by Collectiv4



Belgian architects Collectiv4 have designed a house where the entire exterior is covered in black polyurethane.


Here's some information about the project from the architects:


We are Belgian architecture firm based in Leuven. After gaining experience for eight years we tried a new approach to potential clients and started with a range of conceptional studies.


In this case, which is an actual project for the Ferson family (not conceptual), we proposed to the client an unexpected proposal for his housing problem and they fell in love instantly.


After a long walk on a path of an extreme concept we had to come back and downscale the project due to budgetary reasons. At this point the project became a quest because the clients had already fallen in love with our first concept.


Instead of putting the original concept on a diet, this would remand our clients too much to the first concept, we came up with a compact, simple shaped volume that is spacious enough for a modern family with two up-growing boys.


The only thing left from the original concept is the finish of the outer shell, a black polyurethane based waterproof coating (both on walls and roof).









Posted on Sunday August 3rd 2008 at 2:53 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • edward

    It looks like a very interesting design, but providing exteriors in semi-darkness isn’t helpful in appreciating it. But one can guess why. I like the idea of spending a minimum on the exterior to provide the most spacious interior for the money. I suppose one could always add a veneer of some sort to the exterior when funds were available.

  • fuZzyOne

    very good idea but that darkness is killing that thing…

  • Seth

    Someone had to much fun with the edge blur filter

  • justin

    Consider the last interior rendering. Now imagine yourself in this space. This project is utterly sophomoric. One of the worst posts I’ve seen in a while.

  • Tyler

    myst riders, designer please try to rerender ;)

  • matt

    shall we blame the use-and-abuse of blur filter in those renderings or the oppressive square grid?

  • monsieur!

    LOVE the blur filter

    cool plans tho

  • liminal

    All that remains from the original concept is the black polyurethane? Not a good starting point. I agree with Justin, the spatial organisation is appalling.

  • Please use your memory.

    Can recall NL architects WOS8?


    If architecture is just about preserving the outer finish from the first to the last proposal…

  • critic

    @ miguel, thanks for the remainder.

    the outside renderings are simply useless…
    the green, the edge blur, the background, simply no value.
    the plans are ok, but not more.
    since the windows in those rooms are so little, they actually must be rather dark…

    how did the shape happen, how was it developed?
    what is the concept exept selling the building as a vessel for such a plastik coating?

    rather disapointing.

  • Anon

    Surely having a completely straight wall is more useful than that very shallow cut out, from the big plans it appears the site wasn’t very restrictive to the shape so why have they made such awkward angles and wasted spaces?

  • Crusty the Clown

    The interior spaces are utterly claustrophobic, leaving me with a feeling similar to drowning. And the black exterior makes it a truly depressing little pimple of a house. This clown is all frowns.

  • oped

    To be completely honest, It feels a bit like a horror film set. I don’t think I would live in this space if someone paid me.

    Yes, the renderings a reminisent of a 1st year students work and are photoshoped badly.

    The design itslef pays little to no attention to spatial quality or arrangement.

    The material choices are cold and plastic (haha)..very artificial.

    The exterior aesthetic is the strongest aspect and looks quite decent from some angles…though the renderings make it appear mysterious and are quite far from how it will appear if built.

  • I’d prefer simple model or sketches. Renderings had done all damages.

  • aha

    Renderings don’t have to show how things are going to look like if build or be realistic in the first place. They have to be simple and create an atmosphere.
    I like this progressive style.

  • edward

    To paraphrase Mark Twain on the music of Wagner: this project is better than it looks. I think. But the oh so tricky documentation seems designed to obscure for some reason. Like the plans don’t should any of the openings in the walls. I think the angled walls in the small bedrooms are a plus, much more interesting than a regular volume.

  • loz

    I feel the client should be have rejected the architects second design attempt when they learn’t that they couldn’t afford the first concept. Oh and I have seen far better first year students work. A simple sketch would have done just fine…