Cocoon by
Tanya Shukstelinsky


Design graduate Tanya Shukstelinsky has proposed a new type of affordable urban housing, with people living between two sheets of suspended fabric (+ slideshow).

Cocoon by Tanya Shukstelinsky

Shukstelinsky's Cocoon project features sheets of material with stairs and handholds stitched into them, allowing occupants to move between different living zones.

Cocoon by Tanya Shukstelinsky

The result is extremely thin multi-storey dwellings that Shukstelinsky describes as "temporary living spaces for urban nomads".

Cocoon by Tanya Shukstelinsky

The designer created the installation as part of her final year project at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem.

Cocoon by Tanya Shukstelinsky

"Last year, during one of our studio classes named Cocoon, students were asked to design a private space in a public area," Shukstelinsky explains.

Cocoon by Tanya Shukstelinsky

"I came up with an idea for a space between two stitched layers of fabric. A person who lives in the space can move upon the stitches. The stitches are dividing the fabric into different areas - dining area, sleeping area and bath."

The concept could be used to create affordable accommodation in expensive urban areas, Shukstelinsky says. "This concept of a vertical and narrow dwelling can be used in dense urban spaces with expensive real estate. Also, integration with modern technologies and smart textiles can provide the minimum we need for temporary accommodation."

Other micro homes we've published include a motorised compact-living cocoon by Greg Lynn that rotates to provide space for relaxing, sleeping and bathing, and a modular system with cross-shaped capsules that can be flipped around to turn a living room into an office or bathroom.

See all our stories about micro homes »

  • Cornballer

    This is very beautiful just as a spatial concept and piece of design. However it starts to fall down when the narrative of being affordable housing is forced upon it, that’s really just opening up an entire other world of critical thought that isn’t relevant to this project.

    • Mayo_tg

      I agree. Still I find it very interesting as a solution for temporary refugees in case of disasters. I’m not sure about the weight, but it looks like lots of these could be fit in stadiums or warehouses with such a small footprint.

    • michal

      Exactly what I thought. It is a beautiful spatial concept. Period. There are so many qualities to this project that it should not be ashamed of what it is – an installation.

      Any utilitarian aspect just seems forced, untrue and, basically, can not be justified. As an inhabitable structure, this fails completely. One would rather live in tent than this, but one should definitely experience this space.

  • Dom

    Inflated aspiration or not?

  • smack

    This is actually super cool. Wow.

  • I like that the space is only used when someone is occupying it – very interesting.
    We just finished a design and 1:1 prototype of an architectural awnser to more or less the same problem as mentioned above:

    For pictures of the old prototype you can go to:…

  • I agree with Cornballer, nice idea but let’s just keep it as that rather than trying to define it in such a silly way. It’s a nice piece of art. I’d not be surprised if her tutors/professors (or even more likely, academic hoops) were responsible for the urban housing “concept” being imposed.

    Anyway, reminds me of a fort you’d build as a kid, albeit a tad more sophisticated. Which, let’s face it, is all architects *really* want to build. That or stuff from Lego.

  • Clh

    That's something different.

  • Adam

    Isn’t this art rather than architecture, nobody would actually live in this?