House for a Mother, Bengaluru
Architect: Studio 4A
Designed on a small urban land parcel measuring 140 square meters, this house is a beautiful response to the demanding programme and the constricting site. The articulate plans of the small house are drawn keeping the cooking space central to the scheme – a departure from convention and a sensitive response to the client’s specific lifestyle.
In this petit volume, the architects have carved out a well-lit double-height by creating overlapping programmes and eliminating spaces that remain underused at a particular time of the day. Almost all spaces have more than one function and the services are designed for an access from multiple rooms to minimize extra allocation of space for wet areas that may be used for very short spans of time in a day.
The L-shape of the plan carves out a small garden-court at the back connected to the cooking space. A single flight of the staircase connects the ground the first floor where two bedrooms used a common washroom. Devoid of lintels and designed with flat slabs, the house is built on a very conservative budget. The choice of conventional materials lead the architects to find inventive ways of expressing them – the steel in windows and projections, concrete in structure and floor, brick masonry in the walls and earthen pots for the filler-slabs.
As spaces assume multiple functions, the boundaries of privacy are blurred. The architects have used simple devices to restore this lost balance. The structure is carefully finished and detailed. The House for a Mother by Studio 4A in Bengaluru is a prototype for the architecture of small urban homes designed with great receptiveness towards the users, budget and the available land and therefore, it is a Citation project in The Merit List.