3166 Balancing Barn Suffolk, 2010

: ©Studio Makkink & Bey and Living Architecture

Living Architecture

In commission of Living Architecture, we were asked to create the interior of MVRDV's Balancing Barn in Suffolk. Their design was largely inspired by the way the Barn brings the outside inside and emphasises the presence of both earth and sky. The interior scheme traces the transition from earth to sky as one walks from the earthbound entrance of the Barn towards the ‘levitating’ end of the building, where the floor to ceiling window offers an uninterrupted view of the clouds and sky. Walls and floors are decorated with sampled elements of paintings by Suffolk artists John Constable and Thomas Gainsborough. The classic images gradually evolve into abstract angular colour patches, they become images reminiscent of modern art and they take on a more applied form as wall panelling. The house can accommodate two or eight people equally comfortably, feeling neither empty nor crowded, thanks to customisable furniture and fittings, mostly by Dutch designers. The clear cut Dutch furnishings and primary colours, the simple 'butt joinery' used in the construction of the designs by Studio Makkink & Bey all celebrate the elementary design idiom that is characteristic for Dutch design.