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Cabin in Kumamura
Alpine cabins are often associated with the sensual qualities of the natural building material wood. Yet the relationship is seldom as unmitigated as in this cube in the Kumamoto district. The architects piled up cedar timbers on a square footprint, its sides four metres in length. The interior is reminiscent of children’s building blocks, having broken free of conventional wisdom regarding timber construction. Stratified in eleven different layers, the beams give definition both to the building envelope and the interior space and function alternately as wall, ceiling, bar table, bench, shelf or bed. The cedar furnishes warmth and a sense of well-being, while the frameless glazing heightens the drama of the surrounding woods.