Shikoku Island, Japan
The Cliff House is located at Chu Cape, south of the city of Yaigakō on the Japanese island of Shikoku. At the edge of the Pacific Ocean, this isolated place offers a perfect living environment to spend holidays.
This site possesses multiple advantages that makes of this house a unique living space.
The cape is easily accessible by road, an hour and a half drive from Kochi Airport and is located a few kilometers from the closest city, Yaigakō.
It offers a wide panorama on the Pacific Ocean, pristine vegetation, fresh sea air and isolation from dwellings.
The Chu Cape is located in a tropical area of Japan, with changing temperatures and frequent rainfalls. The island of Shikoku is subject to a humid subtropical climate, with a mild winter (absence of snow) and a hot and humid summer. In winter, the mountain peaks undergo heavy snowfall, but the coasts remain untouched.
By analyzing each component of the architecture, I try to alter and remodel the parameters in order to create a sensorial journey. My goal is to propose clear and pleasant views with a high exposure to light, to immerse the inhabitant in the local scenery. This notably requires working on the proportions and dimensions of the space by creating differences in ceiling heights and elevation.
Material, beyond their aesthetic aspects, are also key elements to generate different atmospheres. The versatility of materiel can be revealed by playing with the heat of the material, or the noise it emits when someone walks on it. Moving from a room covered with tiles to a room covered with parquet triggers distinctive sensations. It is also possible to play with the smell of material.
Finally, it is also possible to create confusion in space: mixing interior and exterior spaces by integrating a room surrounded by vegetation for example.
The second major point is acoustics. Indeed, the client expects spaces with perfect acoustic quality to fully enjoy the house and its surroundings. Acoustics also play a major role in creating different atmospheres: hearing is a sense which needs to be treated in architecture with as much importance as the others.
In this regard, I chose to conceive acoustically isolated spaces in the house, transformable into a listening room. This is made possible via the use of acoustic panels placed on rails and storable, that absorb the mid frequencies of sound.
On the ceiling, I placed convex bamboo reflectors, which absorb the high frequencies of sound.
Finally, on the floor of the rooms, absorbent tiles will be laid to absorb the low frequencies of sound.
These three devices enable a near-perfect acoustic quality. The addition of a particular glazing named "double fixed frame" further limits sound distortions and echoes.