Project: Seaside Wall House
Architect: Architect KHY
Location: Ujeong-Dong, South Korea
Area: 2,422 sf
Photo by: Hwang Hyo Chel
Seaside Wall House by KHY Architects
Architect KHY have designed the Seaside Wall House as a weekend beach vacation for families of urban residents who live in high-rise studio apartments for a week, so naturally, they want something more spacious for the weekend. They get a beautiful contemporary residence with almost 2,500 square feet of real estate in a location with views directly to the coastline.
The thought of having a beach house over the weekend gives us special hope for city dwellers. The client is a married couple who live in high-rise studio apartments. They have conflicting desires about how they want their new home to be on this particular site. One to actively face the beach, and the other must be protected safely from it. This conflicting desire produces a certain way for us to define the relationship between the beach and this house. As a result, we finally have a house that has a clear movement facing the beach and the feel of protection from the beach at the same time.
First, we place a long wall and add a short wall perpendicular to the space that only faces the sea. This structural wall stands alone dividing and connecting spaces of various sizes and shapes. Therefore, this house is equipped with a variety of scenes between different walls. The sequence of houses starts from penetrating long solid walls to short walls, and continues when climbing upstairs with curved walls or walking on a bridge from wall to wall.
These walls show the enthusiastic attitude of seeing the sea. Openings, in this case, are not considered windows, but are felt as exterior experiences as if someone were standing outside between vertical barriers. Therefore the walls expand the sense of being inside towards the beach which fades the difference between inside and outside.
Meanwhile, the finishing material and the shape of this wall act as a protective nuance. Like the wings of a mother bird, hollow walls form a shelter for its inhabitants. This small motion of the curved wall protects the inner occupants from the outer eye. Finishing material is brightly colored dry mud brick. These bricks represent a structural role in the building, implying an image of thick mud walls. Light falls gently on this material, giving rise to the fine texture of soil particles. According to the time of day, the distance between the walls, or the shape of the walls, the light casts soft or heavy shadows that deepen the view towards the beach.
When the sun begins to fall, sunlight is invited to the empty space placed on the second and third floors of the sky. Because the west side of the wall is sturdy without openings, exhausting rays from the west are blocked. Therefore, the light does not directly wash the empty marble wall and gently illuminates the lower floor.
The exterior has two contrasting views from the back and the sea. The back side of the flat house holder with a sturdy and reliable presence. Instead, the front shows an open position and faces the beach. The facade facing the beach has a figure that always changes according to the sunlight which treats the house differently when the weather changes. This weekend’s house looks as though it is looking at the ocean even though it’s empty.