‘Architecture is playing with form, creating something unexpected and unobvious’: ‘Thrilling’ Mazury house design wins plaudits for its ‘boundary-breaking philosophy’
Though still a year away from realisation, a luxury house inspired by the humble cottages found in Poland’s lake district has captured the imagination of the country’s design press.
Named the Re: Kite House, the 490 sq/m building is the work of Marcin Tomaszewski, owner and founder of the acclaimed Reform Architekt studio.
Located in the Mazury region, the architect worked with a simple brief: to design a property that would maximise the lakeside views whilst also referencing the local architecture typical of the area.
Given the relative proximity of traditional huts and cabins on the horizon, Tomaszewski paid homage to these by using tri-tonal ceramic tiles specially picked so that they would visually form a coherent whole.
Tomaszewski said: “Re: Kite House is my contemporary interpretation of the classic dwellings found in Mazury – my assumption is that you can make progress while simultaneously drawing on heritage. If the possibility exists, I believe we should modernise traditional forms – why should we be such radicals when it comes to architecture?”
Nonetheless, Re: Kite House is far from a standard project and the architect has mixed elements of tradition with his own boundary-breaking philosophies.
“What counts in architecture is playing with form, creating something unexpected and not obvious. I do not like creating solids that do not blend in with the surroundings because I believe that there must be cohesion,” he says.
“However, at the same time I have the impression that many people are afraid to break with the past and do something different – something that is better and more interesting.”
This yearning to accomplish something special was not the only challenge faced by the architect. Restricted by local planning laws, Tomaszewski had to follow strict rules not to build closer than 100-metres to the shoreline.
Difficult as this was, it was this consideration that gave the building its final, intriguing form. Set on a narrow plot, Tomaszewski introduced a diagonally-shaped building line towards the rear so as to meet spatial requirements.
“The entire project was based on the reduction of the body of the house,” he says. “Thanks to that, I ended up with a shape that looks like a kite from the top. However, this was not my intention. Rather, it is the resultant form that can be described as a deltoid.
“It perfectly relates to the surroundings and a dynamic but light shape was created that I feel reflects the mood of summer, free time and kitesurfing. Moreover, the ridge – that is the top of the building – runs diagonally and due to this the corner of the building that faces the lake is high and does not lose any space.”
Designed to be compact, the entrance, living room and kitchen have all been placed close together; giving the property length, a garage runs out from the back and connects the house to a grassy embankment.
Organically absorbed into its surroundings through its intelligent use of colours, the building has already courted praise for its thrilling form; looking different from each side, each level has been positioned at odds with the others yet in a way that looks entirely natural.
For Tomaszewski, though, the slew of plaudits have almost been expected.
Based in Łódź, a city he says inspires him, the architect is the proud recipient of numerous industry awards including the Best Polish Single Residence prize at the European Property Awards in 2020 and 2021 for his Re: Perfect House and Re: Lakeside House.
Previously, the architect has also been hailed for his ‘mirrored’ houses, created so as to accent and slot in with their wooded locations.