(X) for Ordos 100 by Multiplicities



New York architects Multiplicities have designed a house for Inner Mongolia, China as part of the Ordos 100 project.


The architects are one of 100 firms selected by architects Herzog & de Meuron who have each designed a private residence for the project, which is masterplanned by the artist Ai Weiwei.  See more Dezeen stories about Ordos 100 projects here and here.


The house has an oval-shaped plan and curved exterior walls constructed from black brick.  The interior spaces are designed around a central void made from white quartz.


Here's some more information from Multiplicities:



white lung + black skin = ( ) + X = (X)

The “( )” is imploded by the “X” that expands and contracts from within, creating a dramatic void and multiple terraces at different levels from which to view the surrounding river landscape.

The “( )” is made of black brick while the “X” is made of white quartz white plaster. Both elements change their density by allowing different types of screen to filter the sun, water, light and air inside the inhabitable spaces.


Above: section AA

Situated at parcel number 24, the (X) house’s life revolves around a series of intersecting patios that inhale/exhale everything it needs and wants at different times closing tired cycles and opening new ones.


Above: section BB

The white lung takes and bounces light and air inside the house to keep the black skin healthy. The black skin absorbs heat and gives protection and warmth to the lung as well as varied activities, providing different programmatic thicknesses creating buffer zones wherever it is necessary.


Above: section CC

The organizational principles of the house start with the understanding of the modular brick system and its multiple possible permutations and material properties. Taking the brick as a unit that can weave an infinite matrix of conditions with variations on density, texture, thickness, we are interested in “designing the conditions as opposed to conditioning the design”. By establishing a matrix of permutable conditions, we create a system that can gradually change its properties throughout the building and adapt to its final ideal configuration giving flexibility to the built object.


Above: axonometric

Entering the villa through one of the “X’s” funnels, residents and visitors encounter the void that works as an atrium throughout the house. The first patio is the main access to the small living room that overlooks both voids.  The second patio is directly linked to the pool and the sauna which at times can overflow inundating the patio in a seasonal basis.  We think that this will perform as a huge humidifier during dry seasons. The voids “infect” the house with terraces on all levels providing different gardens and atmospheres making possible a vast range of living conditions.


Above: ground floor


Above: first floor


Above: second floor


Above: roof plan

Name of project:  (X) for ORDOS 100
Design:  *multiplicities
Project Team:  Daniel Holguin, Issei Suma, Perla Pequeño, Joanna Park Sohn, Christopher Chan, Nicole Rodríguez, Masayuki Sono

Engineers: OVE ARUP ny

Methus Srisuchart + Tatchapon Lertwirojkul
Jee Won Kim Architect
ID engineers

More Dezeen stories about Ordos 100:



Luca Selva Architects


Estudio Barozzi Veiga

Posted on Thursday February 5th 2009 at 10:15 am by Rachael Sykes. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Sergi

    I wonder why some architechts have to use such a rich but empty language…

  • Sergi

    Anyway, I like it very much.

  • OLGV.

    @Sergi … to be spectacular :)
    … and indeed they mange to do it well :D

  • nmiller

    one of the better Ordos houses

  • jsx

    just an arch stud came by the site and found it awesome…
    Guess I’ve to check it evryday… :D
    …dozo yorosiku

  • Matty D

    Surprisingly efficient use of space inside such an irregular exterior form. Very Nice!

  • Matt

    I do enjoy the design, but, agreed with Sergi, the description does seem to be almost absurdly pretentious.

  • gaque

    felicitaciones daniel!

  • zeus

    another disappointing ordos house…the volume is just lumpy and the design language way too abstract. shame.

  • kanye east

    “The interior spaces are designed around a central void made from white quartz.”

    sounds expensive? anyone know?

  • romeo

    stoned orchestra! …-nice- project

  • romeo

    it looks like a broken easter egg !!!

  • Richie

    I quite like the external and internal volumes and the contrast in materiality and I think it makes a strong statement as an object in the landscape, I wish the interior looked more like something you could actually live in and less like an art gallery though.. It’s weird trying to judge these ORDOS houses based on the proposal images though, they seem so context-less.

  • Patrick

    @ Matty D: Efficient? Say that again! Have you seen the size of the house?! Or did they just scale down the furniture?

  • canpichurri

    A lot of sqms. I guess, it will work for Mongolia, but in Europe? However, the basic idea is nice and gave me some inspiration for my own project.
    Quartz white is expensive, dark black bricks even more – it is not an economical solution.

  • Sabir

    I kind of like it…..the exterior and the interior.

    …and BTW…rich language sells better than design.

  • hernawan

    Beautifull Dancing Concrete in the Snow. I like it much, inspirational Project. IMO Eventhough expensive in structural, but Congrats…