The architecture studio Ryuichi Ashizawa has created a spiral house for a family of four on Awaji Island in Japan. The idea was to design a house that grows with the family, that develops with the passing of the years. The surrounding landscape, the garden, was built together with the house to harmonize the whole.
In the centre of the house is a space, called a “niha”, with a diameter of about 2.4 m and a height of 7.5 m. During the day, sunlight seeps in through the skylight at the top of the niha, while at night, darkness sets in, as no light is installed. when open, the skylight also functions as a tunnel that allows air to gush out of the ground.
Since it is not assigned to a predefined function, the center of the house is used for various activities, from meditation to meetings with friends. The unconventional shape of the house is a nod to the local wooden houses on Awaji Island, which are clad in earth. A house that inserts the human being in a harmonious natural context, encouraging meditation, meeting, sharing and connecting with the energy of the island.