While many of interiors featuring tiles are detailed, dramatic, decorative and decadent, there is also a place for spaces that are stark, rigorous and pared back. However, for this to truly work, the designer has to have a clear vision … and a sympathetic client.
Both conditions were clearly met at the Bazillion Apartment, Vilinius, Lithuania. Here YCL Studio drew a clear line between day and night in this pied-à-terre for two, while simultaneously blurring the conventional division between ‘wet’ and ‘dry’ parts of the dwelling.
This compact 45 sq. metre apartment, is essentially one open space that is divided in two by a single, ceramic-clad wall. YCL’s designers conquered and divided the space with an oblique tiled wall that splits the interior into two equal parts; one containing the living area and kitchen, the other the bedroom and bathroom. The former is cool and light, the latter warm and massive.
The cool part has a white wooden floor, a white ceiling and white walls, while the floor and walls of the warm part are covered in tiles in three shades of an earthy reddish brown. The specified tiles are from Agrob Buchtal’s Goldline range. With its warm colours and fine gloss effects, Goldline creates an exclusive and comfortable ambience. Goldline comes in six hues: golden ochre, golden sienna, golden brown, golden cream, golden grey and golden black. The available formats are 150 by 150, 150 by 300, 250 by 250 and 125 by 250mm. The range is completed by nosing tiles, skirting pieces, stair tiles, edges, strip tiles, corners and decorative borders.
At the Bazillion apartment, concrete ceiling has been painted to complement the warm hue of the terracotta-coloured tiles.
The two contrasting parts of the interior are tied together by furniture in black, white and grey. The absence of any colour other than terracotta has a powerful effect, giving the space the unusual impression of a partially-coloured black-and-white movie.
Expressing these contrasting moods in a relatively confined space was the dominant design concept and drove every detail and decision on the project. Nothing was allowed to dilute this concept, resulting in an apartment with a strong and unconventional character.
The contrast selected – white wood versus terracotta-coloured ceramics – is not only strong in itself, but contains an intriguing twist. The conventional division in apartments is based on the presence, or absence, of running water. Usually the kitchen, bathroom and toilet are grouped together and often treated as a unit. In this case, the material of choice for the ‘wet’ part of a dwelling is not applied in the kitchen, while the bedroom is clad with ceramics.
The terracotta tiles hint at the red bricks used throughout the Old Town. Moreover, the designers believed that ceramics could evoke the calm atmosphere they were seeking. Most importantly, perhaps, for the critical success of this interior is how the tiles have been liberated from their common, limited role and have become a central feature of the interior. In this way, the Bazillion Apartment convincingly underlines the versatility of ceramic tiles.
A new post by Joe Simpson, Diary of a Tile Addict, April 2017.