Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen


Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

Dutch architects Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten have designed this one-man pavilion made entirely of rubber. Update: this project is included in Dezeen Book of Ideas, which is on sale now for £12.

Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

The Rubber Pavilion is entered though a slit and has a bench in one wall and a window frame, which cannot be seen through, in another.

Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

The entire pavilion including the bench and window frame are formed from resin poured into a mold.

Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

The pavilion will be on display at the Museum Bahnsteig in Oberhausen, Germany from Wednesday 25 August until the 1 October, and then will sit in front of the Schauspielhaus in Bochum from 4 to 8 October.

Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

Here's some more from the architects:

“I have often thought that probably there might be a way found out to make an artificial glutinous composition much resembling that excrement out of which the silk worm wire-draws his clew” Robert Hooke, 1664


The Rubber House is a small pavilion, completely made out of rubber. The house can be entered, one person at a time, to retreat from the outside and to find oneself again. The introvert character of the pavilion is reinforced by the hollow acoustics of the interior. Partly translucent walls enlighten the space during the day Unlike what you might expect, the Rubber House is all about mass and weight.

Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

The house is an amber-coloured rectangular monolith (outside dimensions 1,5x 1,5 x 2,3 m) in which an egg shaped interior seems to be carved out. One wall offers a small bench and another a window-frame with no view. The entrance is nothing more than a vertical cut in a third wall. The whole house, including bench and window-frame, is made out of poured in place urethane resin.

Rubber House by Zeinstra van Gelderen architecten

Click above for larger image

The Rubber House will be the main source of inspiration for a performance by the dramaturg Tjyying Liu in the first week of October 2010 on the square in front of the Schauspielhaus Bochum. Before that, it will also be on display in Oberhausen as part of the ISEA2010 conference, the International Symposium on Electronic Art. From August 25 till October 1 it will be on display at the Museumbahnsteig in Oberhausen. The Rubberhouse has been made possible by a grant from the Fonds BKVB

(the Netherlands Foundation for Visual Arts, Design and Architecture) and is produced by ‘Anything is Possible’, Amsterdam

See also:


Tender Tub
by Maren Hartveld
Soundhouse by Careyjones
and Jefferson Sheard
by Frank Havermans

Posted on Monday August 23rd 2010 at 3:33 pm by Joe Mills. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Klaus

    Sorry to be a drag on this, and please do discuss, but I find this not only a waste of material and of grant money, but totally pointless both functionally and aesthetically, it doesn't bring anything interesting to the table.
    If at least there had been an interesting shape exploration, or experimentation with what the material can offer.. but not really.
    On a side note, can you imagine how sweaty inside?

    • pmk

      Hej Klaus,
      100% disagree with you – fortunately not only you can say what is interesting and what is not.

      • klaus_77

        Fortunately i didn't say that.
        Would you like to extend a bit more the reason why you find it interesting?

        • samo19

          probably there is no answer the only interest of contemporary design is his much advertised nothingness

          • Laurie Freeman

            This is why one cannot discuss design in terms of art.

  • Great, Jurjen!

  • creative_about_design

    In a grotesque way it looks like the 'Rubber House' is giving birth! The interior colours look very super natural. I love this! Especially like the image with the sheep!

  • luis

    That's the most pointless thing i've ever seen

  • Jas

    great exploration of material, though exiting it would remind me of a scene from Ace Ventura.

    • polly

      exploration of material? where?

  • )eroen

    So, you can have safe sex in there?

  • kavia

    mmmm…. toooooo sweaty inside…..

  • Julio

    Ridiculous… maybe sheeps enjoy it…. exploration of material? “pavilion”? a bench and a “window”?

  • MrCoolTeapot

    For those of you who don’t know: urethane rubber smells terrible and the smell does not go away for a very long time. (months if not years) I pour tabletop rubber objects, prototypes, and I can’t work with them for longer than an hour or two before I need to step outside for some air. (Until they’re fully cured and the smell goes away. about a week or two)

    This much rubber would take a very long time before the smell dissapates. If anyone tries to sit in this object, with poor air circulation, I’m sure they’ll have a headache before not too long.

    It’s odd that its called the Rubber House but the description uses the term “resin” several times. Rubber is not resin and I’m curious why they make that mistake?

  • kanu

    i can see it as an interactive art piece. where you go inside and wonder, "why are you here in first place?" Colors, smell, sweat, all that will help make an intense experience.

  • hohoho

    whoa a lot of haters here.

  • pet

    i guess it's could be used as a variation of the TOI TOI (mobile restroom). it has the same qualities, hot in the summer cold in the winter and stinks around a year.

  • Riyad Joucka


    through urethane sniffing I suppose?

  • I feel my claustrophobia waking up just by seeing the images… I'd be so scared of choking in there!

  • ste

    i really love this project! this is very interesting… imagine the way this little object behaves when one enters the cell… the rubber will move in strange ways when the men inside the cell sits down or stands up… the rubber gives some transparency when leaned together but stay opaque when the one remains a certain distance… this small house comes alive with the one in the inside… i really dig this experiment and would love to see further explanation…

    waste of money and material? wtf? if we stop to explore things just because we are told to act green we will never occur any new aesthetics and conciousness of spatial phenomonas… by all given respect to our nature and the ressources we – as human beeings – need to keep the spirit of exploration alive… without crazy minds and a certain amount of uselessness we would not live in a world as beauty as it is… its all about balance between rationality and irrationality

    • shaun

      I don't know about the spatial phenomonas mate, but i think you got that upside down, the waste of material has nothing to do with being green, it's about how many things you could explore if you had that massive (and expensive) amount of rubber, and ending up with such a dull object, which doesn't push the boundaries of the material nor the function, nor is it poetic at all, is not what i call crazy minds really, it's a bit of a shame.

  • James

    how is this a house? it's more of a tent



  • bunkdirk

    the surprise is it's actually cool inside, and sounds comes through in a muffled way – just like the light – of course it's highly experimental in being architectural in its geometry – cubic forms, rectangular window, but bio/anthropomorphic geometry for the chair and cocoon-like interior
    and yes, it is like a womb and the above antagonistic responses say more about the authors than the object :)
    finally, it is all about associations and metaphors (spatial ones, material ones) versus actual experience – meaning and phenomenology
    it is the cleverest thing

  • Fizz

    Rachel Whiteread meets Dr Who. Disappointed to learn that the interior doesn't open up to Tardis proportions ('''diggy-di-din, diggy-di-din… wohooooooo… woooooosh''')

  • interesting for sure, perhaps a basis for developing further possibilities using this kind of material for temporary shelter for displaced by wars, homeless people all aver the world. Why do most people think that every comment has to be 'funny'? This is not funny ' it could perhaps solve problems for people without shelter. I agree with the intelligent comment by bunkdirt: '…and yes, it is like a womb and the above antagonistic responses say more about the authors than the object…' Could not agree more. Your comment is brilliant.