The house stands in a quiet residential area in the northern part of Osaka prefecture. The client was drawn to a wall in a certain store made from Oya tuff stone and wished to use it somewhere on his house. He also had a desire to include a doma1 in the plan so we decided to use Oya tuff stone to surround the doma and for a portion of the outside wall.
The doma of this house serves the dual function of an entry hall and stairwell. A place to take off one’s shoes2 was not planned beforehand, the decision being left for the owner to determine once he lived in the house. The doma, lined with Oya tuff stone, spans from the front door to the back of the house. When the door to the entrance of the doma and the back door are opened it allows wind to pass through the house. On fine days, time spent in the doma gives a liberated feeling of being outdoors even though one is actually inside.
The house is organized with the doma at the center, the finished Oya tuff stone visible from various places. The first floor contains a living room adjoining the doma, the kitchen, and a piano space which faces the living room with the doma in between. The 2nd floor contains a work space looking out on the atrium and a tatami room as well as the bedroom and child’s room.
1 A doma is an area in a house that is set at ground level, one level lower than the rest of the house, and treated like an outdoor space. Traditionally, the doma would have a dirt floor and was used to carry out farm work, kitchen work, etc. In modern Japanese architecture, however, it is usually no more than a narrow space in which to take off one’s shoes not an active living space.
2 In Japan, it is expected that people take off their shoes when entering a house. The entrance, a variation of a doma called the genkan, is usually set into the floor at ground level requiring one to step up into the house after removing one’s shoes.Location: Minoh, Osaka, Japan Architect: Fujiwarramuro architects
Principle use: single family house
Site area: 134.09 m2
Building area: 70.26 m2
Total floor area: 120.81 m2
Project architect: Shintaro Fujiwara, Yoshio Muro
Photographer: Shintaro Fujiwara, Eiji Tomita