Japanese practice Daisuke Motogi Architecture have renovated a small, 43.82 square meter apartment. The renovated apartment is located in a residential district of Naka-Meguro in Tokyo. The budget for the apartment renovation and refurbishment was very tight. The architects avoided relocating the existing kitchen and bathroom to the north side, a typical format for Japanese apartment buildings. Instead they worked with the existing floor plan.
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The kitchen and bathroom are located in the middle section of the renovated apartment. The living room is located on the south side and bedroom on the north side of the apartment. Since the original storage spaces for small items were dispersed throughout the apartment, an innovative storage solution was designed to make the house clutter free. The kitchen and office spaces are wrapped in fabric walls with storage pockets attached to them. The fabric pockets with zipper offer plenty of storage space for clutter. The concrete beams and plywood walls are left exposed.
From the architects, “Pockets on clothes and bags are a rather ambiguous existence; we find them highly useful when they are there, but we can do without them if they are not there. We don’t keep coins, pens or a handkerchief in our pockets forever, but only ‘stuff’ these things into them temporarily when not in use. For some reason, I associated them with moles on the face — small disturbance or “noises” that also add some charm — and decided to attach them on the wall. Pockets are not completely functional as storages, but such incompleteness may allow for co-existence of various things or any situations — it is perfectly acceptable if things are randomly stuffed into the pockets or if they are sticking out of them. The pocket wall becomes a versatile receptacle where miscellaneous things from everyday life are accepted as they are and not as disturbing “noises”.
Clearing all the things completely is not the only way to make the table look tidy. One can rearrange miscellaneous existing things on the grid layout to make it look beautiful. It is also possible to design a background that embraces co-existence of miscellaneous daily things.
I would like to explore a way to design more generously, other than just clearing out unnecessary things or restricting uncontrollable things.”