Brandt + Simon's house

Pixelated Tile Façade

Brandt + Simon's house
Brandt + Simon’s eco-friendly family house, Berlin

Design is taken very seriously in Berlin. So is sustainability. These two imperatives are combined in an extraordinary new house designed by local architectural practice Brandt + Simon Architekten.

This eco-friendly single family house features a pixelated façade formed using gradated green ceramic tiles.  The house also features solar energy panels, and was constructed using a raft of eco materials, including recycled paper insulation in order to create a green (both literally and metaphorically) living space.

Brandt + Simon's house
Brandt + Simon’s eco-friendly family house, Berlin

The tiles create a certain shading allowing the home to blend in with surrounding trees and vegetation. The result is a building that while not quite invisible, certainly does not impinge on its neighbourhood.

Behind the pixelated tiled façade, lies a traditional timber frame construction, while the spacious interior is finished in stark white, that emphasises the sense of space and promotes the striking staircase.

The internal structure allows for a flexible organisation of the rooms. The kitchen and dining areas open towards the terrace, while the downstairs living spaces look to a small walled part of the garden. The nursery, situated on the upper floor, opens up views towards the front garden.

Brandt + Simon's house
Brandt + Simon’s eco-friendly family house

The colour gradient of the house is laid out so it gets darker close towards the ground and blends with the adjacent treetops. .

The unusual façade of coloured plain tiles make this house a peculiar new member of the urban fabric. The huge number of plain tiles and the chosen colour range creates a creative interplay between a very traditional building material with an almost hand-made quality and the pixelated appearance of the whole façade from a distance. The colour gradient was planned in great detail. It recalls the former nursery on the estate and also interprets the client’s brief to built a ‘garden house’.

While using the plain tiles for the whole facade a massive and durable solution was found, which beside its design potential provides a technically perfect coverage for the timber frame construction behind.

This article first appeared in Tile & Stone Journal, June 2013.

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