Architects: The Objectionists / Jim Dreitlein, Serban Ionescu, Justin Smith Location: Brooklyn, NY, USA Collaborators: Narek Gevorgian, Brian Nemeth, David Valdivia, Thorsten Foerster, Eric Juron, Garen Barsegian, Billy Bob Archer, Caitlin Duffy, Rick Weber, Mentor Noci Client: Jim Dreitlein, Serban Ionescu, Justin Smith, Narek Gevorgian Total Area: 667sqft Budget: $4,000 Project year: 2009 Photographs: James O’Meara
The Miner and a Major is a free-standing, 5 unit dwelling for 5 architects/designers/artists, in a Brooklyn loft. All rooms/units act like a puzzle through visual portals and physical interlockings with the neighboring room(s). The dwelling was designed and built by Jim Dreitlein, Serban Ionescu and Justin Smith (The Objectionists) with the help of many friends and colleagues.
Resting in a neighborhood with rich naval and ship building history was a major influence in beginning and continually through-out the design process. Many materials were commercially purchased but a guiding design principle was the materials we found or salvaged that influenced an organic and playful growth of the design to evolve towards. Lights were donated by Amerlux and we frequented BIG NYC (Built It Green) for recycled materials. A multitude of sketches was also a key principle to how we designed and built more spontaneously and collaboratively than having a set of already organized drawings. This allowed for more play, mistakes and surprises to influence and guide the design process towards something un-sketched.
Each room/ unit consists of the most essential and bare minimum: a desk, a bed and storage space. Through small portals and doors the rooms start intersecting themselves spatially, expanding the internal space into the larger surrounding space/host where the dwelling rests in, creating a fine but yet controllable line between what is private and public in a room. Each room/ unit is individually and significantly different from the other, but intertwine to act and perform as one larger unified and autonomous unit/dwelling/community.