dmvA: house BVA
dmvA: house BVA dmvA: house BVA
jun 29, 2011

dmvA: house BVA

‘house BVA’ by dmvA in turnhout, belgium all images courtesy dmvA photographer: frederik vercruysse

‘house BVA’ by belgian practice dmvA architecten is a multi-storey private dwelling in a residential neighbourhood of turnhout, belgium. flanked on both sides by adjacent structures, the simple volume employs two dichotomous elevations to the front and back, utilizing a closed facade to the street to maximize on privacy while completely opening to the garden behind.

back elevation

drawing on the brickwork that is predominantly present in the adjacent structures, the street facade of the house is singularly finished in brick with porous sections marking the surface in a rhythmic sequence. the traditionally solid material is explored in a ‘knitted’ manner, generating areas of permeability in front of the windows. the resulting effect maintains natural sunlight intake while limiting unwanted views from the street.

street elevation

in contrast, the back elevation features a translucent treatment that stretches from the wall to the saddle-back roof. large floor-to-ceiling glass doors allow the interior to expand into the garden, both spatially and visually. this transparent finish draws in abundant natural light as well as funnels the atmosphere of the interior to the outdoor elements behind. the domestic programs that accommodate the living spaces – living, dining, kitchen, bedrooms – are placed by the open side while service programs are situated by the street.


brickwork detail

view into the entry

interior view of hallway

living room

to the back garden

(left) brickwork seen from kitchen (right) washroom

attic space

(left) kid’s bedroom (right) circulation space

from backyard

street view

night view of street facade

schematic diagram

project info:

principal: mr. and mrs. borghs van ammel team: david driesen, tom verschueren, sacha bratkowsky, lindsay rinckhout general contractor: dwBO (carcase works), vorsselmans (aluminium), martens (glass) constructional engineer: ASB built area: 324. m2

  • it’s that ultra defensive front elevation. as a one off experiment, just about o.k.; but as new urban paradigm, truly grim. is it a response to google streetview?

    nicey says:
  • i dont like the interior that much

    tan says:
  • I agree with ‘Nicey’. Great as a one off experiment, in fact I really like it, but a whole street of them would be frightening. This design, intentionally promotes personal privacy and private experience to the rear at the expense of community interaction to the front. A whole street of these would be a community with seriously hampered social links and subsequent social problems.

    Jimbo_Jet says:
  • Really interesting. Would have liked more elements or colours which related the front to the interior & to the rear. They somehow seem like separate projects. I love the rear view, but wonder how it performs in respect to heating/insulation.

    BS says:
  • very good proyect, materials and spaces
    though I think the front facade is a bit agresive to the neighboughood, why is this? looks like a nice road.
    exellent space the atic!!!!!

    juliano says:
  • very cool, love the idea

    yojic says:
  • nice and very simple project! Good

    Virginia says:
  • There is no difference between the way this house faces the street and any of the neighboring buildings. There are no porches, no unshaded windows, no balconies on any of the other houses. Only driveways and front doors. If anything, this is very reactionary piece of architecture, that is responding very directly to the way people want to live in suburbs, just without the fakeness of a ‘cute’ facade.

    boomdynamite says:
  • that is to say: I really like it.

    boomdynamite says:
  • I really dislike that front facade – going beyond the obvious anti-socialness of it, it’s just plain and simply inarticulate (with the exception of the doorway) and ugly.

    I do like the maner in which color has been employed – just goes to show that these architects are capable of refinement – the front just doesn’t get there

    dbkii says:
  • This architecture promotes privacy indeed. I just miss the barbed wires and it would look like a high security prison to me. I think it is a bit of an insult to a community though. A way to loosen things up would be a bit of splendid gardening in the front yard, and I don’t mean a couple of smiling dwarfs with a mushroom house. I love the back yard though

    adam says:

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