True meaning of Minimal

Art Déco, Art Nouveau, Rococo, Modernism, Classic,Industrial… We have seen it all. Today’s big Interior design trends seem to be Minimalism and Nordic/Scandinavian design.

My opinion is that we assign a style to a work a little too soon. We should first understand where this styles come from to be able to identify our selves with them.

What does Scandinavian design mean? Light, fresh and a pure interior with a lot of light and use of natural materials. Scandinavian design started in the 50’s. That makes this movement a post WII style. The main thought behind Scandinavian design is to create an environment which is functional, simple and minimal. The use of natural materials such as wood originate from the ideology of low-cost/affordable design.The idea was to create a home where everybody can get used too and can pay for,realizing this ideology by using low-cost and mass produced materials.

Minimal? What does that mean? A white box with a chair inside it? Could be… But every interior has a meaning. Why is that chair placed there? Should everything be white to be minimal? I disagree. Minimalism is a very spiritual movement in my opinion.It started in the 60’s by visual arts and music. It was introduced into architecture later on. The main Characteristic of minimalist movement is the pureness of it. You only see what you need to see to understand and be able to live. Other styles have visual characteristics such as specific use of materials and colors. But Minimalism does not and in my opinion, that is exactly why it cannot be defined with a red line.

This project is situated in Spain and realized by Cifuentes Olivier Arquitectes. I saw the chance in this project to talk about this subjects and stay in the concrete mood at the same time (last post). As you can see, this isn’t the image that you would imagine by hearing the word Minimal. But it is.

The goal of this project is to join 2 separated locals and use the space as an archive.

This is what Minimal means to me.

© José Hevia

© José Hevia

5449a5bde58eceb56700025d_reform-of-two-places-cifuentes-olivier-arquitectes_portada

© José Hevia

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© José Hevia

The architects of this project tried to reduce the budget by eliminating the unnecessary elements. They used the actual characteristics of the building to provide an atmosphere. By cracking the concrete wall open, we can feel the roughness of the building but at the same time, by revealing the traces of the ancient wall covering, the glue, the tubes and the “imperfections” of the architecture, we feel the fragility of the building. These are the elements that most of the architects try to hide behind a smooth wall…

Floor Plan

Floor Plan

They also eliminated the use of artificial air conditioning, simply because of the fact, that the building is located nearby the sea and they can enjoy from the sea breeze which provides a pleasant temperature.

5449a5b9e58ece999700026c_reform-of-two-places-cifuentes-olivier-arquitectes_04_arxiu_ibavi_1440

© José Hevia

The shelving is done by simple old fashion metallic shelves. By adding a touch of wood , they brought in a warmth that metal doesn’t have.

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2 thoughts on “True meaning of Minimal

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