Azumino House

Azumino-City, Nagano, Japon
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Photo © Akinobu Kawabe
Yashima architect and associates
Azumino-City, Nagano, Japon

The surrounding area is a long, quiet countryside landscape, but there is also a certain amount of pedestrian traffic, as a residential road passes nearby and the neighbouring land was subdivided at the same time. Therefore, we planned a house where people can live while enjoying the scenery without worrying about being seen.

The building is a long, narrow rectangle from north to south, with a large single-flow roof that follows the topography. The interior was designed with an appropriate sense of distance and small connections between places so that the owner, his wife and their parents, who live with them, can lead a peaceful life while working at home.

The horizontal windows in the living and dining rooms were designed so that the interior is not too visible from the outside, while the street and pedestrian traffic are cut off from the interior, allowing the view of the landscape to be seen only as if it were a painting.

A side door to the living room opens onto the terrace, which leads gently into a corn field and provides a place for the family to relax and enjoy an evening drink while watching the lights of the city and the majestic mountain scenery beyond.

The reading corner is a buffer zone between the two rooms, where one can immerse oneself in reading on a one-seater sofa in a small windowless space.

By adjusting the position and height of the windows, the curtains and shoji screens are closed for less time, so that at dusk in the countryside with few street lights and in the bleak winter landscape, the building, in combination with its generous shape, has a gentle appearance, as if passers-by can feel the warm atmosphere of a light-lit life. I would be very happy.

In recent years, the beautiful landscape of fields and rice paddies that has long been preserved in Azumino seems to be gradually disappearing due to housing developments. It is inevitable that an architect's work will have an impact on the landscape of a town, but I would like to remember that the buildings I design will themselves become part of the next landscape.

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