Project: Small Apartment in Singapore / Gradient Space
Interior Design: Metre Architects
Principal: WOON Chung Yen
Area: 43 m2
Photo Credits: Studio Periphery
This small apartment in Singapore of only 43 square meters evoked two fundamental questions:
(1) Could a small apartment still support a lifestyle as vivid and varied as those in larger spaces?
(2) How much of life’s spectrum of activities, from introverted retreat to extroverted entertainment, could be embodied in a compact space?
Instead of relying on the conventional means of transformable partitions to accommodate the multi-functionality of the apartment, this design innovates by sculpting a spatial gradient along which the multiplicities of life progress by the ascend or descend along this inclination.
Transformable partitions such as pivot, sliding, or hinged panels often require a rectilinear geometry. The rejection of transformable partitions therefore allows the departure from rectilinearity, and this project champions a return to the sculptural qualities of design through the purposeful interplay of diagonal lines: Upon entry to the apartment the first diagonal leads the eye from the shoe cabinet bench to the daylight beyond the balcony; skewed ledges rise over each stepped seating and continue to rise as privacy screens along the sides of the bed; cabinets at the kitchen glass-partition taper both in plan as a short-cut round the corner, and in section as an aperture to emit more daylight.
Pragmatic yet transcending functionality, every diagonal serves a purpose while animating space at the same time. This project is an assemblage of carefully calculated approaches that epitomizes clever space planning and ingenious solution. Most importantly, it addresses all the issues that small space living poses in a visually striking way.
This solution preserved the singularity of the space and discovered a gradient of life’s spectrum even in a petite expanse:
Retreat up the steps to find introversion;
Journey down the steps to meet extroversion.
The space transforms not through the use of transformable partitions but through the purposeful traverse along this spatial gradient.