From time to time, we feature unique residences from São Paulo, Brazil’s largest city in Brazil located in the most populous Brazilian state. São Paulo itself exerts a strong regional influence in commerce and finance as well as design, the arts and entertainment maintaining a strong international influence. This strong influence is also prevalent in the residence of architect Pedro Useche. The Venezuelan architect/designer was exposed to the world of architecture and design at a young age during his studies in Los Angeles. Instantly, the talk of the town, Useche created stunning and unique furniture pieces because he had to, as he had no money to buy designer furniture, he had to buy the materials to create unique furniture pieces, with their spectacular, eye-catching design.
What makes Pedro Useche’s house so unique is that all the furniture pieces are designed by the architect himself; modern-day, vintage-like designs that harp back to the 60’s are present throughout the talented architect’s house. Initially starting his architectural practice in 1984 in Brazil, even after becoming a professional who is universally admired and successful, Useche did not lost the crave for designing exceptional furniture pieces as well as the architecture for his residence. The house itself which is located in the south western district of Morumbi - one of the highest points in São Paulo, Morumbi is considered to be one of the most sophisticated and wealthiest neighbourhoods in the city, despite the proximity of the Paraisópolis favela. Its construction started in 1999 and was completed in 2003; the approximately 1,000 square meter, three-storey residence is very simple and contemporary in architectural design and uses traditional and humble materials from the city of São Paulo.
The exterior landscape is very welcoming and very homely; plants from the local region and the lush green surrounding environment interact invitingly with the architecture. Seeking the wellbeing and the bliss of living in the residence, Useche has designed a friendly and hospitable environment where one can interact and be close to nature – a relationship which is evident from the façade. The original structure which is built of concrete has been gradually covered by various lush climbing plants in varying shades of green. The abundant flora can also be seen from the living room which has a double height and skylights which favour natural lighting.
According to the architect, the residence is organized in three independent parts – the communal space – located in the centre, the private space and the service area. Every part of the house is designed in such a way as to bring enhanced illumination and ventilation throughout, giving a sustainable eco-friendly character. The house has also been equipped with solar energy panels and operates in an eco-conscious manner.
Humble, local materials have been used throughout; the prominent Portuguese mosaic has been used for the external areas and the terrace. Local cumaru natural hardwood has been used for the flooring in the communal areas, while glass tiles have been used in the bathrooms and the services areas such as the kitchen and the laundry. The unique double height and the mezzanine go on to add character to this single family residence. However, what adds the style and sets that modern-vintage tone are the furniture and the artwork. Pedro Useche’s art collection is inimitable, vibrant and colourful, just like the city of São Paulo. Artworks collected from artists from all over the world and prominent contemporary Brazilian artists such as Rochelle Costi, Luis Hermano, Nazareth Pacheco, Stephan Doitschinoff, Valeska Soares, and Amanda Melo ‘dress-up’ the walls. Furniture exclusively designed by Useche make this house exceptional as everything has been carefully studied and designed exclusively for this space. From the rocking chairs to the fireplace and the lighting all inspired by the masters of modern furniture design, they are all brought to the standards of the Useche residence.
Overall, the configuration of the single family residence which is located in one of the most sophisticated districts in Sao Paulo, is a building with noteworthy architectural elements and an elegant, modern day interior with an eco-conscious character. The newly designed modern-day vintage-like furnishing harmoniously blends in to the existing architectural design, while the exquisite art collection adds that hint of the vibrant, colourful São Paulo lifestyle. Pedro Useche as the owner of Mobile Useche has participated in national and international exhibitions and has received various design awards from the Brazilian House Museum, while he has also taught graduate courses in the field of Interior Design at Senac.