Virtual House – Designer Village Project
Location: Youpon Village, Zhejiang, China
Client: Youpon Integrated Ceiling
Total Area: 1055 m2
AZPML: Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Maider Llaguno-Munitxa, Guillermo Fernandez-Abascal, Manuel Eijo, Ivaylo Nachev, Amaya Luzarraga, Paolo Toldo, Diego Grisalena, Irene Abellan
The Virtual House project has its origins in an invitation from Any Corporation in 1997 to design a theoretical residence which explored the idea of the “virtual.” The proposal was a looped band of virtual “ground” which acted both as a ground and an envelope for a series of seamlessly interconnected “rooms.” The geometrical system was based on two interconnected Moebius loops, whose geometry was rigorously determined by pragmatic considerations.
The structure was deliberately exploring a multi-levelled organization where the discontinuity between levels was challenged. The project was originally designed to sit within a natural landscape —any landscape— with whom it would engage in a sort of mimetic play, as if the house was formed by a singular fold of the local landscape, and could become a seamless continuation of the landscape. A large amount of the house walls are therefore entirely glazed, enabling the continuity between the inside and the outside landscape, where the residential functions float contingently, vaguely contained in five lobes of space which are entirely transparent towards the North and the South sides.
The project had a canonical ambition: to become a sort of late-capitalist alternative to the Farnsworth’s House where the architecture has become pliant yet specific, and where the repetitive orthogonal modern grid has been replaced by a polyrhythmic spatial singularity.