In the Japanese prefecture of Nagano, nestled in the forest and just a stone’s throw from a stream of water, Tono Mirai Architects designed the Shell House, a house with an unusual shape that allows you to live in contact with nature.
Commissioned by a private client, Shell House was born from the request for a house lost in the green, where you don’t notice the time passing. So, the architects thought of a small house, a choice almost forced by the laws that required to build only 20% of the land purchased, which blends in with the surrounding environment. This camouflage was created not only chromatically, but also in terms of materials.
Apart from the huge glass window, the Shell House is entirely made of wood and earth. Large dark wood slabs were also chosen for the roof, which, combined with the curved surface, make the appearance of the house similar to that of a huge pine cone.
Inside the space has been divided into two levels, the lower level that houses the living area, kitchen and bathroom and the upper level that houses the sleeping area. All the spaces are entirely covered with wood, except for the long wavy wall, built-in concrete, which follows the shapes of the plant.
The peculiarity of Shell House is that, once the large windows are opened, the boundary between inside and outside is completely blurred, giving the feeling of living not only surrounded by nature but inside it.