Sculptural Concrete Ribbon Façade Abstracts Emotion And Warmth
- 11 Oct '23
- 1:04 pm by Vruti Desai
Weaving together emotions and materiality, Studio Ardete’s Ribbon House is an eloquent piece of architecture in a tranquil neighbourhood of Punjab. Built explicitly for the client, it differs considerably from the other customary Indian homes. With its iconic and meticulously crafted dynamic concrete façade enveloping the structure, Ribbon House reshapes the fabric of Mohali. Spread across a plot area of 3712 sq. ft., the home expresses an oversized ribbon wrapped around the structure. With a blend of curvilinear and stark geometric forms, it demonstrates a unique identity of its own.
Devoid of the usual urban and civic connotations, this home envisions a timeless journey of the client and engineer Ravijeet Singh’s professional legacy in the construction industry – RS Builders, symbolised by the flow of the curved exterior. Guiding the viewer’s vision through the evolution of his diverse career path, Ar. Badrinath Kaleru & Ar. Prerna Kaleru of Studio Ardete outlines the client’s testimony to carve out a dwelling that best depicts the fluid nature of his professional expertise.
According to Studio Ardete, the house is, “Inspired by organic contours found in nature; the design of the Ribbon House harmoniously integrates fluid lines that resemble a gently unfurling ribbon, elegantly embracing the entire structure.” The team adds that “the initial design consisted of edgy concrete blocks, and the journey from “block” to “ribbon” is what brought the main challenge with it.
The proportions of Ribbon House are fragmented into slender curves to define the spaces and amplify natural light and ventilation. The residence is unmistakably modern and made of tactile materials like glass and concrete. Its closed, grey, concrete façade layered with the white structure and voids using clear glass creates a conversation between the copious form and well-defined outlines. The unusual exterior enhances the vivid form of the structure, creating a perception of movement and vitality to the building’s appearance along with the interplay of the concrete forms (fluid curves) and the structural elements (solid).
The home showcases an open floor plan with four bedrooms across two levels, accommodating the dining room, kitchen, living area, and two bedrooms on the ground floor. A similar plan is followed on the above floors, with varying expanses of break-out spaces overlooking the lower levels. With a lounge area and gym at the basement level, the central section around the staircase on each level is intended to be open to exaggerate the volume. This feature also allows natural light to uncover profound depth through the gaps of the ribbon-like structure and clear skylights.
The interiors result from crafting a dramatic balance between aesthetics, space, and texture. With a minimalist approach for the inside, the colour palette is muted with pops of colour and contemporary styling by stylist, Rahul Kukreja and the architects emphasising unique elements to distinguish each room significantly, thus creating a dialogue between patterns and colours. Accent light fixtures sourced from Tisva and Flos lighting, along with the natural light to brighten up the interiors, – illustrate the warm interior aesthetics, striking contrast against the cold grey exterior stretch of the neighbourhood.
“When someone begins pursuing the curves, he or she may be astounded by the kinds of emotions that can be reflected in the spaces the curves create,” explains Ar. Badrinath Kaleru & Ar. Prerna Kaleru of Studio Ardete.
Symphonizing with the contemporary exteriors, the interior of the residence accentuates the staircase, augmenting the curves as a design highlight for the Ribbon House. Connecting vertical spaces with tensile cables and twisting balustrades with tilting black rails that pivot around a central pole reveals a puzzle-like structure. This artistic concrete element showcasing innovative geometry and exquisite craftsmanship demands attention as it unfolds at every level.
Having built various projects of differing scales and proportions, the client sought a home that represents his work, reminiscing his career path. The sculptural ribbon is beyond just an ornamentation expressing the client’s emotions and underlining the dedication and compassion to build this residence using an element of concrete to relate to his journey in the construction industry. The extension of texture and curves on the inside enhances the materiality – exposing the honest nature of concrete referred to as ‘natural concrete’ or handcrafted. In this regard, the aesthetic of exposed concrete has a role to play, and even more so for concrete that takes its references from the earth.
Juxtaposing materials magnifies its diverse qualities, enhancing the bold yet minimal interior design approach. Flaunting the natural characteristics of the stones, tiles, and concrete, using synthetic materials for cladding, panelling, and even wooden elements is limited and meticulously taken care of. The bathrooms for example feature the rich texture of tiles sourced from Simpolo and Spenza ceramics, complementing the luxury fittings and sanitary ware from Toto And Grohe fittings.
The conscientious arrangements of wooden and stone flooring with accent concrete elements and painted interior walls harmoniously depict an unending journey, thus forging a sense of continuity. Creating an emotional connection to the artisan items, Ribbon House celebrates craftsmanship – appreciating the art and skills of the experts. To achieve artistic expression and reach the limits of the materials, Studio Ardete constantly pushes the boundaries of creativity to exquisitely deliver uniqueness in form and function for each of its clients.