Penthouses thrive on bringing the outdoors in. Because they are located on roofs, they came to have large open spaces around. The...Read More
From left: Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón of MUT Design.
Imagine living in a house with only a roof and no outwards walls to fully embrace the outside in.
International trade fair organizer for interiors imm cologne played host to a highly architectural creation, opening 2020 with a luscious start. Spanish creatives MUT Design interpreted “Das Haus” which means “The House” in German, as a visionary living concept in which the inside of the house is turned to face the outside. Boundaries between the interior rooms and between the internal and external space is removed, to enrich the living experience not only to nature but also to the community of residents – and the world beyond.
Das Haus 2020 is reminiscent of a classical pavilion: formed from the combination of a circle and a square, styled with minimalist furnishings, open on all sides. It is an example of ideal architecture, perfect for a house nestled within the Albufera. The colours of this breathtaking lagoon landscape were an inspiration for Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón – who founded MUT Design ten years ago – in their selection of materials and harmonious colour schemes for their vision of home living for imm cologne 2020.
With their abstract approach, the Spaniard designers have succeeded in making an aesthetically persuasive and – thanks to their notion of a hybrid space – hugely appealing statement in support of a living concept that unites architecture and nature, the indoors and outdoors, opportunities for privacy and communal living.
“Our intention was to soften the boundaries between indoors and outdoors.”
– Alberto Sánchez of MUT Design
Outdoors is indoors
“Life on the Mediterranean is synonymous with life outdoors. Since time immemorial, our homes have always incorporated an element of nature into their interiors,” MUT Design explain. Traditionally, the patio has been a shaded inner courtyard that forms the organisational centre in Mediterranean architecture. Social life also revolves around this hybrid space.
Das Haus “A la fresca” evolves from the inside towards the outside. Although the centre still appears to be the backbone of the house and is filled with daylight, the actual function of the patio as an integrated open-air space has been relocated to the outside. As such, the boundary between the indoors and outdoors is absent.
The structure of Das Haus seems to be upside down. The central area for retreat, the Refugium, is surrounded by four veranda-like spaces: a room for relaxation and dressing, an activity area, a kitchen and an area for personal hygiene. “Our intention was to soften the boundaries between indoors and outdoors,” says Alberto Sánchez of MUT Design, summarising the concept. The Spanish design team has therefore not only brought a piece of nature into the home – they have moved home life itself outdoors. “A bathroom in the open air exerts an immense fascination,” says Eduardo Villalón. “We can imagine that the experience of the warm summer has not only made outdoor kitchens more popular, but also increased the desire to experiment with outdoor bathrooms.”
High-quality tables, chairs, pouffes and rugs, all suitable for outdoor use occupy the four spaces that open concavely outwards: an outdoor cooking station serves as the barbecue-ready kitchen; there is a hammock instead of a bed in the room designed for relaxation; the dressing and hygiene area is symbolically linked to the surrounding area of water.
“Even traditional shapes become modern icons in the hands of MUT Design, the woven rattan of the outdoor hanging seat Nautica pays homage to one of the first pieces created by Expormim in the 1970s and aims to evoke the reflection of sunrays on the ocean waves.”
– Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón of MUT Design
The Architectural Concept of Removing the Boundaries in Space
Modern architecture not only seeks to create flowing transitions between indoors and outdoors; it designs fluid, multifunctional spaces in which furniture can assume highly diverse possibilities for use and form zones. This “loft” concept ensures expansiveness even on a small scale. A contemporary living space must be open to individual and changing functions.
In Das Haus by MUT Design at imm cologne 2020, this forward-looking home culture is staged as an experiment in the form of semi-circular sections of space linked to each other via the external sides. All the areas have an open design and are used communally. Cocooning is directed inwards, while community opens up outwards. Only the room hinted at in the centre is conceived as a separate area with a corresponding closeness and cave-like architecture. It forms a space that can be used for meditation and quiet retreat. “The rooms are designed as individual entities, but they are simultaneously very open so as to create a feeling of the utmost fluidity,” explain Alberto Sánchez and Eduardo Villalón.