The Red House School Villa-Lobos is located in the affluent neighbourhood of Vila Leopoldina.
The private school, which serves children in kindergarten through high school, is part of a network of Red House International Schools in Brazil. The educational institution offers a bilingual education, with a focus on developing socio-emotional skills and a global mindset.
"Red House students learn through active research and exploration inside and outside the classroom," said local firm Studio Dlux, who designed the new campus in conjunction with the school's educators.
"The Villa-Lobos campus aims to become a reference for international and bilingual schools in Brazil," the architects added.
The project entailed the adaptive reuse of a pair of concrete buildings dating to 1978. The two-storey, blocky structures were once used as warehouses for electronics.
The team covered facades in vanilla-hued stucco and added durable lattices made of "ecological wood" and plastic. To unite the two blocks, a new metal sky bridge was added.
One of the buildings encompasses a preschool, cafeteria and indoor sports court. The other holds the elementary and high school spaces, along with a library, a maker space and music rooms.
The team incorporated playful moments throughout the school, such as gabled forms, circular cutouts and swaths of bright colour. Interior finishes include vinyl flooring, foam acoustical panels and plywood.
The wood decor was selected by Studio Dlux from open-source files and then digitally fabricated. The team also incorporated pieces from its own company specializing in open-source furniture design, called Mono Design.
Outside of the buildings, the team created a multi-sports court, a sand court, an athletics track, a playground and a garden.
"They were carefully designed to be fun and safe places with a unique identity," the team said.
"The Red House Villa-Lobos campus will be able to transform and enrich the experience of each student, with environments that offer the maximum in comfort, creativity and flexibility."
Other projects by Studio Dlux include a publisher's office filled with plywood furniture and vibrant hues, and a second Red House school that features a multicoloured playground and a vaulted ceiling that looks like a starry sky.
The photography is by Hugo Chinaglia.
Architecture and interior design: Studio Dlux
Lead architect: Daniel Ogata
Responsible architect: Bárbara Pajtak
Project team: Daniel Ogata, Bárbara Pajtak, Isabela Marano, Laura Rocha and Pedro Parreira
Engineering: Richter Buelau
Construction: Richter Buelau
Management: Richter Buelau
Luminotechnical design: Studio Dlux
Electrical design: DJ Manutenção Complementary project: ARC Engenharia
Kitchen design: Dimensão projetos
Furniture: Metadil, TokStok, Mono Design, Futon Company, Kastrup
Joinery: Madeira Design
Manufacturers: Brises: Arkos Brasil (brises), Piso Leve (rubber floor), Ere Lab/Kaska (toys)