AZB by Geneto

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Japanese architects Geneto used screens decorated with grooves to divide this Tokyo apartment.

AZB by Geneto

Called AZB, the project involved renovating an apartment for rental, and comprises a black bedroom and white multiple-use space separated by sliding screens.

AZB by Geneto

More screens are used to hide or reveal the kitchen equiment and and storage.

AZB by Geneto

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AZB by Geneto

Photographs are by Takumi Ota.

The information below is from Geneto:


AZB apartment

The switch of ordinary and extraordinary life

For this renovation project in a rental apartment block, we had many limitations. Enclosing only 45m2 floor space and being 40 years old, the structure did not allow us much scope to alter the layout.

AZB by Geneto

We were also restricted by the fact that the entire North façade is glass.

AZB by Geneto

Additionally given the layout of the services, drastic alteration of the bathroom was not possible.

AZB by Geneto

These constraints provided us with our point of departure.

AZB by Geneto

This project was our first rental space and, due to the multi-user nature of its use, required a highly objective design approach.

AZB by Geneto

But were we to acquiesce to public opinion, or unsympathetically impose our own ideals?

AZB by Geneto

It was imperative that the design cater for a variety of users, so in order to solve this conundrum we considered the bare essentials for living and saw how those cold be provided for.

AZB by Geneto

The apartment consists only of a bedroom and a multi-use space.

AZB by Geneto

The space is enclosed by sliding panels that shift into place to conceal those objects which we find commonplace and banal. They convert the everyday into the extraordinary.

AZB by Geneto

The potential of fittings

While considering the design of the panels, we looked to a traditional Japanese architectural application called Fusuma.

AZB by Geneto

Fusuma is the art of decorating room dividing panels with scenes of nature to create the impression that one is living outdoors enveloped in nature. We abstracted this concept and applied it to the dividing panels.The composition of lines draws inspiration from the silhouette of the surrounding mountains and from the city skyline - which has become our new nature.

AZB by Geneto

Click above for larger image

By this we have elevated that which tends to be lifeless to a new level of meaning, rich with emotion. Yet the Fusama do not only provide emotional needs of the space but also the functional. The carved lines are at once handles and crevices for coat hangers which would otherwise protrude from the panels and compromise the simplicity of the space.

AZB by Geneto

Click above for larger image

This use of the Fusuma creates a balance between the disparity of function and emotional impact.


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  • jed

    I like it.
    But.
    shouldnt the black room have a black ceiling…?
    I'd like it if it had a black ceiling.
    Can you get the painters back and then reshoot and then repost?
    kthxbye.

    • http://750705.tumblr.com inaesthetic

      "The space is enclosed by sliding panels that shift into place"
      The black "walls" are actually sliding panels. The ceiling color belongs to the rest of the house.

  • gozilla

    The detail image is not very clear but it looks like they used Jelutong for the core of the sliding panels. If so, Jelutong is an endangered species logged from rainforests in Indonesia and Malaysia.

    Design is important. It is even more when it is responsible.