MoyaMoya by Fumihiko Sano studio PHENOMENON is located in Higashikurume – a commuter town in the suburb of Tokyo, Japan. Designed for a female client that needed space to dye kimonos, the home has a kitchen, studio, bedroom and bathroom on the main level with a living room, Japanese style Tatami room, powder room and bedrooms on the 2nd level. Because the female client was concerned with the security aspect of her home, the architects designed a unique Stainless steel full height enclosure for MoyaMoya that acts both as a gauzy facade feature and as a secured enclosure punctured only by the front and back entrances and by a 2nd storey balcony.
The Stainless steel mesh is attached to a Stainless steel framework of vertical square tubing in a double height arrangement on either side of a horizontal band of the same square tubing. From a distance the mesh takes on a gauzy effect that shimmers in the light.
The rippling shimmers are caused by wind passing through the Stainless Steel, causing it to flex and bend as the sun reflects off of it.
The main entrance to the home is a white steel door that blends with the rest of the façade and takes on the appearance of the three windows above it even though the windows are behind the mesh and the door is not.
The Stainless Steel enclosure is far enough away from the home to allow easy passage all the way around without having to exit the security of the mesh.
An intercom next to the door lets the homeowner know who is arriving since there are no windows within the entry zone.
While the front of the home is closed off to the street, the back of MoyaMoya is less private and closed, allowing both the views of Mt Fuji in the distance to permeate the inner core and the back terrace to be a continuation of the living zone – albeit an outdoor one.
Aside from the back deck off of a pair of sliding glass doors, the 2nd floor balcony is also free of the Stainless Steel mesh – but the glass door below it is not.
The 2nd floor balcony is off of the living room which is located at the top of the stairs. Next to it is the Tatami room and behind the living room wall is 1 of 3 upstairs bedrooms.
The Tatami room is raised and a series of storage drawers takes advantage of the level change.
The stairs lead down to the open work space that the homeowner uses to dye kimonos. Next to the work space is both the kitchen and a small office.
Aside from the green mats of the Tatami room, the kitchen is the only other space that features a colour within its bold red floor.
From inside the home the Stainless Steel netting takes on a moiré pattern that is sure to enhance the creative process of the homeowners studio time.
As night falls, the exposed voids within the façade become more prominent, especially where the bold red of the kitchen floor is exposed.
When the evening light is all but gone, flood lights in discreet locations keep the perimeter of MoyaMoya well lit.
Photography by Daisuke Shimokawa