image ©Jan Vranovsky
Located in the Nagatacho district of Tokyo, this particular pastel-colored apartment has been renovated by the British designer and architect Adam Nathaniel Furman, who used the soft colors of the Lucent HI-MACS® collection for both the kitchen and the bathroom.
With its 160 square meters, three bedrooms and two bathrooms, the apartment is a tribute to color, an energetic manifesto of an architecture that celebrates the senses. A palette of pastel colors, combined with natural and hi-tech materials, such as fir and HI-MACS®, fits into a wide-ranging space to give life to a delicate but decisive environment.
The owners – a retired couple who regularly host people from all over the world, bought the apartment in the 1980s immediately after the construction of the building.
Before the intervention, the apartment had a layout that made it dark and cramped, with low ceilings and small rooms that opened onto a long corridor. Furman has thus reorganized the space by creating an antechamber and a short corridor that lead to two single rooms. The rest of the space opens onto an open kitchen, equipped with a large breakfast peninsula. The master bedroom and its en suite bathroom are separated from the dining area so as to make the solution flexible should the owners wish to rent part of the apartment. The use of color, the common thread between the spaces, combined with the mix of materials, creates a lively and functional environment.
The ceilings have been raised, significantly increasing the height of most rooms. Thus a complex ceiling was created, above which the beams were covered with an ivory white textured wallpaper.
Ceiling level changes do not create any disturbance, considering that attention is captured by the pastel palette of the walls and floors.
The colors, combined with the expansion of open spaces and transparent curtains, flood the environment with light.
“At the beginning, the owners called it ‘apartment bubble gum’, then, ‘apartment anguria’. The touches of green, the stripes and the warm tones are transformed into fleshy pink,” says the designer.
The one between the clients and the architect was a dialogue on the senses, on taste and on food. Furman, who spent whole days with the couple choosing and buying the materials together, says enthusiastically: “I don’t see how I could have more actively involved customers in the joys of design.”
The choice of colors and materials for the kitchen and bathrooms was an example: for all worktops, the owners opted for a semi-transparent pastel palette in shades of pink and blue from the Lucent collection by HI- MACS. “If you subject this line to those who love color, it can only fall in love with it,” explains Furman.
“I have been working with HI-MACS® for a while since I very much appreciate the clarity and boldness of its colors. I discovered it for the first time when I presented my works at the Design Museum as a Designer in Residence: the supports of exposure were in HIMACS® … I have not abandoned it since.
I chose HI-MACS® Lucent colors because they are perfect for the delicate combination of pastel shades that I created for the apartment, but also to convey a feeling of solidity that was not achievable with the other surfaces I was working with. I therefore used the Lucent range in shades of blue and pink to create ‘sculptural presences’ in the environment “.
HI-MACS® Lucent colors are fundamental in the design of contemporary architecture: combined with the exceptional translucency properties, they allow spectacular results.
In this project, the materials are enhanced for their sensuality and for the strong effect on the imagination. Their use is an experiment in which color, consistency, material and form are mastered within a space that praises the client’s “daily rituals” and common activities, in a space that satisfies the senses.
This project is part of Furman’s continuous experiments on the use of color in architecture and an atypical aesthetic in contemporary design.