This all-black house with vertical steel slats in Barcelona is the definition of a modern family home

Black is a really strong and powerful color, that most of us often run away from! Especially when it comes to using it in our homes. However, when implemented correctly, black can radiate a very modern and minimal feel, creating an aesthetic that instantly leaves you feeling calm and balanced.  Spanish architecture Studio MDAMMM transformed a single-family home in Barcelona into a stunning all-black structure, with the home’s key-design elements shining bright. The original home was a simple structure marked by vertical faces built from exposed bricks of ochre tones, contrasted with grey tones. Studio MDAMMM renovated the dull building into a vision in monochromatic jet black.

Designer: Studio MDAMMM

Called the Black House, the form and the interiors of the home were left untouched. Instead, the studio focused on the volume of the home using a 180-degree design concept that works along four axes. The four axes are monochromatism, accents on the openings, verticality, and capillarity. The studio wanted to retain and preserve as much of the home’s original framework as they could. They only wanted to change the original color, and the material palettes of the home, since they were pretty out of style.

The entire facade was painted a stark black, to elevate the volume’s relationship with the surrounding greenery and vegetation, and to create a rather interesting contrast. The various openings of the home were fitted with angular sheet metal frames that protruded out of the structure. These protruding sections function as a double skin of the building. “The project seems nearly reduced to a graphic sign, monochrome and essential,” said project photographer, Filippo Poli.

The various sections were built in varying lengths and cadences, to create a sense of dynamism on the facade, and multiply it by integrating vertical planes into it. During the daytime, when the sun shines bright, the shadows produce dynamic displays of light, movement, and shade, according to the position of the sun. While, during the night, the home is illuminated by the lighting in the interiors, imparting it with an effervescent and magical glow. The home looks like a beacon of light in the dark.

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This monolithic black concrete home in the mountains of Argentina is modern brutalism at its best

Nestled in the mountains of Córdoba is a black-stained concrete home called The Black House. Designed by Argentinian studio AR Arquitectos, the home occupies 550 square meters, and was commissioned to be built by a family. It is located in the small mountain town of La Calera, on the outskirts of Córdoba.

Designer: AR Arquitectos

“The principal idea was to break with the traditional premises. Our attention was placed on the choice of concrete as the protagonist material in all its senses,” said the studio.

The exterior of the home is marked by black-stained concrete, providing the home with a rather stark and bold aesthetic. It imparts the home with a sense of permanence and individuality. The home features two storeys, with the lower level partially sunken into the ground. Sturdy stairs lead to the main entrance, while a garage designed as a breezeway provides a lovely view of the home. The garage is populated with cars arranged like a ramp. The ground floor of the home showcases an open-concept layout and functions as the communal space of the home. This space is defined by sliding glass walls that open out to stunning views of the surrounding mountains “The ground floor, undermined in the terrain, gives visitors the experience of going through the project and framing the views it suggests. The interior and exterior merge thanks to the permeability that is achieved through large glazed surfaces, with windows that connect the interior space with a large gallery, pool, garden, and the view,” said the studio.

The back of the house features a covered space that enables the residents to lounge about in the outdoors while being protected from harsh sunlight. A double-height area equipped with a staircase is located next to the garage. This area boasts monolithic wooden treads cemented into the concrete wall.

“The staircase is one of the main elements, with the idea of expressing a material’s lightness over the robustness of another material, such as black concrete,” AR Arquitectos said.

The upper storey of the home features two bedrooms, a home office, and a long corridor. All the rooms have access to views of the city of Còrdoba. The master bedroom has a connecting terrace. It is also lined with a beautiful wood paneling. The wood used for the paneling is stronger and lighter than pine boards. The subtle and minimal materials used to create the interiors, perfectly contrast the dark exterior. A wood called Kiri was utilized to build slatted screens which cover up the windows.

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