Kraft Architects, House Kani – This is a plan for a detached house for a couple and two children in Kani City, Gifu Prefecture. The site is long and narrow in the north-south direction, facing a field that my grandfather tends to the south, a new residential area to the east, and a national highway with heavy traffic to the northwest.
The client requested, “I want you to create a bright and comfortable place that makes you want to stretch out when you wake up in the morning.” However, this area is one of the hottest areas in Japan. The main focus of the plan was how to create a comfortable light space for this project site, where the temperature rises like a sauna in the summer and the sun shines through.
Kraft Architects, House Kani – First, we decided on the volume and layout according to the shape of the site, with the policy of securing the maximum opening length on the south side, following the formula of housing planning. In order to be sensitive to seasonal changes, we decided to focus on the north and south sides of the building, which create an extreme lighting environment.
By narrowing down the openings to the north and south to make it easier to understand, the morning sun from the north signals the arrival of summer, and the direct sunlight from the south signals the arrival of winter. The atrium is planned for each opening to trace the light coming in from the north and south openings, and the walls are finished with Japanese paper to create shadows in the light and fill the space with soft light.
Kraft Architects, House Kani – By connecting the north and south openings with a bridge and using both ends as bedrooms, we were able to create bedrooms that ensured privacy. From the bridge, you can look down on the living and dining rooms through the atrium.
A bridge between the two north-south atriums could be planned as a place to connect individuals with their families. For such a bridge, I felt that it would be appropriate to use a delicate and simple structure in which ubiquitous local 105-square small-diameter timbers are interconnected, rather than large-section laminated lumber.
Kraft Architects, House Kani – We hope that the monotonous path of the sun rising in the east and setting in the west will become a rich space filled with light that makes you feel the great outdoors and a space that will serve as a background for families to nurture their time.
Title: House Kani
Address: Kani, Gifu
scale: two-story wooden house
Architects: Kraft Architects
Structural Architects: Hafnium Architects / Hiroshi Fukuyama
Construction Period: 2019
Photography: Masao Nishikawa