Anyone who claims minimalism in music, painting, furniture, room design or interior decor is a matter of simplicity is missing the point: the challenge of keeping things ‘simple’ is actually exceedingly complex – particularly as applied to bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and other building spaces with those nagging programmatic necessities like functional appliances, plumbing fixtures and electrical systems.
Contemporary minimalist architecture, epitomized by this elegantly simple home from Milligram Studio, does (of course) come out of a long history and established design tradition. This houses uses traditional modern materials and colors inside and out, including wood, concrete, white walls and ceilings. Still, unlike highly-decorated house exteriors and interior spaces in which the decor can ‘cover up’ mistakes and miscalculations, every angled intersection, straight line and light aperture has to be carefully planned and controlled in construction.
In this design, everything revolves around a gridded box that is surrounded by a single wrapping ramp. Clean lines on the outside translate into simple line-and-angle furniture, furnishings and fixtures within, from elemental seating objects to near-invisible kitchen counters and appliances.
Now, none of this means we have must want to live in a modern box – for some of us simplicity becomes boring quite quickly – but for people who wonder if such a structure is a more simple design endeavor for architects who strive for minimalist expression, it is worth considering just how complicated such apparently simple creations truly are.