|Project Name||Toy House MM01||Posted in||Residential, Interior Design, Sculpture||Architecture Practice||Pascali Semerdjian Arquitetos|
Completed in July 2015 by Pascali Semerdjian Arquitetos, Toy House MM01 is a designer’s fantasy. The 247-square-meter project is not an actual residence, but a huge playground for a fast-growing family: situated only a few meters away from their main residence in the Jardim Paulista district of São Paulo, the house is a shelter for the children and their toys, and a venue for entertaining guests.
“Since we have some security issues in Brazil, we designed the most discreet entrance possible” say the architects. “If you drive in front of it, you will never imagine what hides behind this grey wall. But it is this lack of elements that also creates a climax when you come in.” In fact, playfulness starts as soon as you step inside, where a piece by twin artists OSGEMEOS greets you with the quote “the world outside is too boring”.
A main staircase connects the three levels of the house beginning with the lower level, where a large TV room with brightly-coloured seats resembling toy blocks and an integrated kitchen for prepping party meals are. The simple design of the space is livened up by artwoks by Anish Kapoor, Keith Haring and Mauro Perucchetti that enhance the fun-loving atmosphere of the area. Meanwhile, sliding doors open up to connect the space to the back end of the house, where a yellow slide is tucked under a subtly-coloured stainless steel staircase leading up to the next level.
Imitating a children’s construction toy and its limitless combinations, the upper floor is a capsule metal-structure that can be assembled in different configurations allowing it to be made bigger or smaller, isolated or opened, as well as easily dismantled if the owners decide to move or rebuild the house. “We created a ‘transformer’-like system that lets the family reshape the space according to their needs”, says the designing team. The minimal architecture on this floor playfully clashes with the big “crooked” bookcases that look like magnified puzzle pieces and Tetris blocks, while sun-blinds and shutters built into the metal frame of the structure can be lowered and raised using a remote control allowing users to take part in the space’s reshaping game.
Topping off this fun construction is the third floor which has been turned into an Indian fort’s observation tower. This area —which is the designer’s favourite part of the project— is connected to the main house through a bright red rope bridge that passes over a wild, jungle-like garden, thus adding a sense of adventure. Further use of vegetation is seen through a sneaky ivy plant climbing up the wall that covers parts of a graffiti featuring bizarre knights and even some flying fish by Brazilian artists Cranio and Presto.
Once outside, looking at the reflective outer walls, one realises that the bright sunlight has been cleverly employed to portray the house as a big and shiny plastic brick.