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J Mayer H Transforms A Former Brutalist Building Into A Garden Oasis Home

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Name
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Casa Morgana
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Words

German architecture firm J Mayer H has stripped back a former Brutalist building, transforming it into ‘Casa Morgana’, a residential property in the north of Germany made from concrete slabs and glass walls.

The home “seems to have fallen out of context,” explains the architects; commenting on its location—which is positioned between traditional 19th-century neighboring homes. “The building is like a study for the possible future of architecture,” they continue, defining the home as a residential sculpture that sits “between optical disturbance and atmospheric displacement.” Besides the austere, monochromatic facade, a striking feature of ‘Casa Morgana’ is its vibrant, subtropical garden, designed by artist and landscape architect Tita Giese. Bamboo, tree trunks, ferns, and palm trees offset the all-gray, exposed-concrete interior, which is formed from different sized concrete cubes placed on top of one another at staggered levels. Whilst their positioning appears distinct from the exterior, inside, they connect together to create an open three-storey home with multi-levelled spaces. “The existing building from 1972 and its annexes from 1991 were reduced to their shells and then retaken with targeted interventions,” explains the architects, “not as a cosmetic make-over, but as a location that distils and continues the archaic and Brutalist aesthetic from the time of the building’s original emergence.” Double-height, rotating glass doors open out to a paved terrace, turning the attention of the “monochromatic interior toward the lush greenery.”

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All images © David Franck