© Isamu Murai
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Hara house is located in an agricultural village in Nagaoka city, Niigata prefecture.
Most functions that are required in a fully self-reliant house were already present on-site, such as a parents' house, storage areas, and private rooms.
The design direction was to create a building that revitalizes the structures already present on-site, and which has the potential to adapt to new functions as the need or mood arises.
The building emulates its surroundings, comprised of many vinyl greenhouses and work sheds, and uses 120mm, square timber members, to create a simple series of ‘A frame’ trusses. That structure creates an image of a large tent; a stiff, yet giving structure that assimilates all human behaviors. Storage, partitions, and private rooms have been removed as much as possible in order to simulate one large open space that adapts to the user’s needs. In that environment, one cannot help but rely on the support of the other buildings around it, thus jutting out of the building envelope and promoting the use of the existing architecture. The aim was to create a way of life that is never complete within just this one structure, but rather forms a piece of the greater architecture; a house that is part of a group of buildings.
Thus, Hara house, as a simple ‘series of truss frames’, aims to connect all of these entities by being part of the collective form of the village. It reinforces old connections while creating new connections with its surrounding buildings and community.
Hara house is a proposal of a ‘small house’ that shows a new ‘management system of a village’; a way to revitalize villages that were formerly a collection of strong interconnections.