Camouflage architecture

Brick architecture is as old as the bible and has been used in thousands of ways. The Belgian architecture office Atelier Vens Vanbelle got inspired by an army technique to give your typical brick house a modern twist. Using the brick as a three dimensional camouflage pattern they broke the heaviness of the massive black cube while adding texture and a good portion of Belgian humour.

This design came to being because of two factors:

The closed-in plot and the big maternal desire of the clients. The lot, that is only reachable by a small street, is surrounded by neighbourhood gardens. Lovely, you would assume, the only problem is that typical Belgian gardens are dominated by sheds. To solve this blind wall problem, the architecture office decided to place some well-calculated windows on the ground floor that deny the existence of them. In the same time they created small openings on the first floor that looks upon this tradition, framing the existing Belgian building mentality.

As the clients dream of a big family, they wanted to have space for 4 children's rooms. But instead of creating separate rooms, the architects proposed one big space that can be used towards the need of the moment. "Sleeping boxes" can be added in the future to give each child its own private space, spreading the building budget over some years. The o-so-needed storage space is hidden in the sides of the multifunctional space, creating the necessary flexibility. The in-between rest space can be filled in with dusty teddies, leg-braking toys or messy teenage desks. Quite ingenious, don't you think?

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