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after before

7047 // Concrete

Minimalist Perfection
Perfection is more than an attainable goal. It’s a state of mind. And minimalism takes it one step further: effortless perfection. We understand that achieving effortless perfection demands rigor. Each and every detail needs attention, and the simplest ones sometimes require the most investment. Like a caterpillar becomes a butterfly, the intensive production process should be unrecognizable in the final product. As architects, our business is drawing the roadmap to perfection, and our signature is its enduring effortlessness. Check out the video!

The path to Kollwitz 20 began when a young couple gave us a challenge. They presented us with an unfinished, three-story garden house to work with, situated in a green courtyard in Prenzlauer Berg. We were asked to transform the bare structure into a minimalist dwelling. And we did it by celebrating its raw concrete, by inserting tailor-made components that blur the distinction between furniture and architecture.

Love Is in the Details

We designed a home to fall in love with by putting our hearts into the details. Every single element has been crafted to blend seamlessly into the home’s overall concept. Boldness is achieved through understatement. The individual parts that make up the design, while sometimes very complex, exude an air of simplicity that permeates throughout.

Functional elements like doorknobs and shelves are nowhere to be seen. In the first-floor kitchen, cabinets and drawers open with a push. The built in refrigerator slightly ejects its door, inviting it to be gripped and swung open. On the second floor, a matte gray wall accentuated with rhythmic shadow gaps spans the width of the house. Pushing its door-sized panels reveals a bathroom and guest room behind.

It’s All about the Materials

The success of minimalist design rests on its materials. And amongst our palette, we’ve included one primal material: light. Daylight cascades from the roof terrace down through the home’s glass-enclosed stairwell, connecting each floor as a single visual space. Light boxes drench the kitchen’s matching grey Corian countertops with photons, while a ribbon of light illuminates and connects the spaces at night. Lighting fixtures hang elegantly from hangers concealed in the slab above.

We strived for the ephemerality of light even in concrete. The ceilings were left as we found them: floating abstract expressions in béton brut. The finished concrete floors were lightened by adding pristine Carrera marble. To top it off, we fabricated one-of-a-kind concrete fixtures for the master bath: a sleek double sink and a cast-in-place bathtub so smooth and light, it aspires to weightlessness.

Pure Sensuality

No distracting clutter, no disturbing decorations: just pure, unobstructed sensuality. Smooth edges and uninterrupted surfaces are decorated only by the light that falls on them, changing as the day progresses, as the seasons come and go. The daily life that takes place inside animates the structure. Flavors, sounds, movements and textures are heightened against a pure, minimalist architecture.

We made every moment of the day a multisensory experience. To start, the master bath is outfitted with its own thermostat, ensuring total comfort while indulging in the two rainfall showerheads. When drawing a bath, carefully positioned lights cast the reflection of waves onto the ceiling. In the living room, a white, undulating, multipurpose furniture piece does more than the typical sofa. It has integrated speakers, and with the push of a button, it morphs into a private cinema. Kollwitz 20 is a minimalist frame for daily life in all its richness of experience. The home’s effortless perfection grants its owners precious peace of mind.

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