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Daylight House, Yokohama Kanagawa, Japan by Takeshoi Hosaka Architects.

Covered courtyard.

Building on the tight urban site is the key to achieving dense cites. But the need to get light and views in to a building is often a defining criteria. In the Daylight House from 2011 by Takeshoi Hosaka Architects they have come about the problem slightly differently.

Their approach has been to sacrifice views, but in compensation flood the house with beautiful diffuse top light. The result is an unusual house, introspective and enclosed, yet so bright and responsive to the natural light as to create a very real sense of connection with outdoors.

29 skylights covering approximately 700mm square are set within the roof plane. Beneath each skylight is a curved acrylic diffuser. Sunlight projecting on to it gives a warped square pattern adding a curvilinear twist to a very orthogonal building.

Fitted furniture and concealed cupboards read like a landscape within a plain box and unpack when in use. The unifying feature is the sublime roof which carries across all the living zones including an enclosed “courtyard” space with live planting.

The almost complete absence of views is controversial and could not be built in many countries because of prescriptive building regulations. Though there is no question about the elegance of the architecture, it would be interesting to know what long term psychological effect if any, the absence of external views has had on the occupants.

View from a distance

Roof sky lights.

Street view.

Last dregs of daylight.

Fading light.

Dining area in bright light.

Internal courtyard.

Shot of study area.

Internal roof detail.

General interior shots.

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