Kohki Hiranuma is a rising star in Japanese architecture known for his provocative use of light and natural materials which take seemingly simple structures and translate them into unique experiences. His multiple award winning House for Everyone in Kusatsu, Shiga, Japan exemplifies this. A simple, small box is wrapped in horizontal strips around a glass and concrete core. The 100 square meter home was built for a family of six whose relatively short stature allowed the design to become more dense than comparable dwellings. The façade stands out for its aesthetic strength and its ability to stretch sunlight throughout the interior without overheating the space in summer while gaining plentiful solar radiation in winter.
A simple wave in the building’s form adds individualism to the home’s profile, giving it an austere sculptural presence. While the three story home is small the building site was even smaller as the home’s footprint is a mere 8 by 11 meters. Adding to the challenge of onsite parking and other conditions, the architect navigated the design by embracing the restrictions rather than maneuvering around them. The interior’s stepped room approach is the playful result, effectively splitting the home in half to accommodate two separate living units.