This Unremarkable ’80s Flat in Barcelona Was Ripe for Reinvention
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Location: Barcelona, Spain
Architect: Forma Arquitectura
From the Architect: “This project is a renovation of an apartment located in the Eixample district of Barcelona, Spain. It is not a modernist building, instead it is a standard 1980s apartment—simple and lacking any architectural features. These apartments are typically narrow with long corridors and little natural light.
“The owners wanted to turn the flat into a charismatic and architectural space with few changes. So, how could we transform an apartment with so little initial charm and challenging conditions?
“Five large openings were made in the long walls of the apartment in order to merge the spaces and achieve diagonal sightlines. The diagonals in the house create a greater sense of spatiality because they are longer than the front view and they cross several rooms, thereby enhancing what you see.
“Several sliding or folding door systems are inserted in the open spaces. These doors act as membranes, allowing rooms to be enclosed or to generate a larger space depending on the owner’s privacy needs. When the mobile systems are open, the apartment becomes an open and flexible space, allowing natural lighting to enter the central area, where it did not previously exist.
“Wood is added to the palette to provide warmth, while pops of green breaks the harmony to give the space personality at key points. The third and most important material are the metallic accents, since in such a narrow apartment it provides much needed lightness. In addition, the mirrors and stainless steel (which also acts as a mirror) multiply the diagonal sightlines that end in the main façade, causing the view to bounce outward and natural light to bounce inward.”