House in Usuki

Usuki, Ōita Prefecture, Japan
Atelier Kenta Eto Architects
Structural Design
Yousuke Kimura
Noriyuki Yano

Located in the Japanese city of Usuki within the Ōita Prefecture lies an unusual minimalist dwelling for a couple. Designed by Atelier Kenta Eto Architects, this two-storey house has a striking yet unassuming triangular form with a dark grey panelled facade. The concept behind the design is to utilise the topography and difference in levels of the site going down from the mountains. The architect has designed the shape of the building not to disturb the impressive landscape, but instead to be an extension of the environment and topography. Its sloped roof (of around 25 degrees) also allows for its owners to climb from the ground level and sit atop the house and admire the view of the pastoral mountain scenery.

The interior has an equally understated design featuring conventional post and beam structures. The timber eaves which form the sloping roof are expressed within the interior, resulting in an honest approach to the architecture. The kitchen, living room, and master bedroom are situated on the first floor, while the hobby room and second bedroom are arranged on the upper floor. The southern edge where the slope goes down has a large opening that connects the inside and outside in a courtyard space, which, although quite exposed, still feels cosy.

In the shop