For much of the world, this past year was spent within the confines of our homes, undoubtedly blurring the lines between our public, professional, and private lives and transforming our living spaces into places of work and productivity. This transformation of spaces and how they are used is nothing new in the world of architecture as countless spaces take on various roles beyond what they were originally designed for--a fact reflected in their layout, design, and the materials used within them.
In this article, we've highlighted a series of Colombian houses that demonstrate just how materials, design, and layout impact a living space.
Context / Climate
Colombia is a country criss-crossed by mountains, which give it a variety of climates and landscapes. In cities such as Bogotá or Tunja, the weather is generally cool and wet. Meanwhile, Medellín and its neighboring cities in the Aburrá Valley enjoy a warmer climate, though not as warm as the coastal areas. When building in each of these unique climates, everything from the natural resources, such as wind, vegetation, and shade, to the fixtures, such as pergolas, windows, perforated walls, and ventilation, must work in sync with the climatic conditions in order to create optimum comfort and functionality within the structure.
Design / Function
The individual priorities of each user ultimately determines the layout and design of a home. Whether intergrating the kitchen into the living space or installing a pool in the yard, all of these determine the course of a house's construction.
Of course, the first thing one notices about a work of architecture is how it looks. In Colombia, one building material stands out thanks to its functionality as well as its aesthetic attributes--brick. Due to the accessibility and the quality of the natural clay from which they're made, bricks are Colombia's go-to building material, a fact that keeps the country's many chircales (handcrafted brick manufacturers) constantly in production; however, this doesn't stop other materials like metal or concrete from finding their place within Colombia's architectural scene.
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