BU1H House by Igor Sirotov Architects
Lessons in Light
Minimalism is about much more than empty spaces. At its most refined, minimalism is the artful use of light, colour and objects to define spaces, creating an atmosphere that is warm and contemplative. The BU1H house, designed by Igor Sirotov Architects, is a great example.
This expansive single-storey residence takes the form of multiple rectangular volumes set in a serene landscape surrounded by trees. The buildings are painted white outside with vast floor-to-ceiling windows, shielded by garage door style shutters which turn into sleek canopies when opened.
The hangar-like interior space is divided into multiple rooms with partitions which do not reach the ceiling, a clever feature which creates intimate spaces whilst preserving a sense of openness. The ceilings and walls are painted black which, when set against the seamless white concrete floor, heighten the focus on the furniture and create a sense of drama.
The partitions and built-in furniture are in light natural wood, complemented by sleek soft furnishings in neutral tones. The lighting is discrete and flattering, with ceiling spots and wall lights casting warm pools of light instead of flooding the space in a blanket of brightness.
This sophisticated interplay between black and white, space and objects as well as light and shade endows this space with so much more personality than the term "minimalism" can convey.
Discrete wall lights and sculptural table lights work best in minimalist spaces. Try the Light Stick wall lamp from Catellani & Smith, the Tomo table light from LZF and the Hoop table lamp from 101 Copenhagen.