a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan

veil house: challenging public/private layers of compact living 

 

Situated near the historic ‘Taiwan-Renga’ (台灣煉瓦) brick kiln from 1899 that prospered in this working-class district in Kaohsiung, Taiwan, the Veil House by Paperfarm revisits this history by weaving a modern, tapestry-like facade using floating clay bricks. In such an area with very narrow streets, and a hyperactive social fabric, privacy is often compromised. To maintain boundaries, windows are often shaded throughout the day; outdoor spaces, such as balconies and terraces, are left largely unused. The project challenges this public/private dynamic of compact urban living, creating a peaceful retreat that redefines this neighborhood’s typical house character: a perforated brick facade liberates the need for window treatments, still allowing filtered light into all the living spaces and bedrooms.

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
all images © Daniel Yao

 

 

using clay bricks to create a breathable, permeable facade 

 

Paperfarm (see more here) elaborates on its brick-based design approach: The impetus for security and privacy reimagines the home as a body with a breathable, permeable skin. Like skin’s pores, perforation density is devised according to the functional needs behind the enclosures. With cored bricks secured by rebars, shelf angles, and steel channels, the brick veil is designed to withstand the local challenges of earthquakes and typhoons. There are also three emergency exits, engineered with saw-tooth pivots, seamlessly inserted onto the facade

 

On the street level, automobile storage is provided without visually distracting pedestrian entry. The powder-coated stainless-steel door is 12 ft by 7 ft (366 cm by 214 cm) in size and is two inches thick. The door and its mechanical track are hung from above, installed behind five courses of veneer bricks with a guide rail below. The entry, through an interior garden, helps quiet the transition from the bustling city streets and provides a deep threshold into the heart of the Veil House, thus acting as a type of perforation

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
challenging the public/private dynamic of compact urban living

 

 

paperfarm defines veil house around an atrium + rich materials

 

The residents circle an open atrium clad with 2×6 vertical aluminum louvers to enter the main living area on the second floor. This materiality pays homage to another Taiwanese vernacular of protected fenestrations while enhancing the home’s verticality. Programmatically, this atrium is the engine of the house: an urban garden on the ground floor; a light well introducing natural illuminance into the rooms on the bedroom’s balconies; an airshaft for cross-ventilation with the brick veil at the front facade; and a connector that ties circulation and program together across multiple floors. Behind the veil, this shifting perspective and the vertical stratification of the program accentuate public versus private relationships. This forms the central discourse on the introverted approach to the Veil House by Paperfarm.

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
using floating clay bricks to create a breathable facade

 

 

Throughout the Veil House interior, custom-designed terrazzo flooring defines spaces within the larger, open-plan living floors, while full-length, custom white-oak millwork conceals the kitchen and the entertainment and storage spaces. The reductive use of materials enhances the focus on the brick veil and the respite gained in the quiet, minimal interior. ‘Ultimately, the defining characteristic of the Veil House is the desire to build a cozy, airy lifestyle behind an urban façade that successfully withdraws from the frenetic street life,’ concludes Paperfarm. 

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
entrance to the Veil House by Paperfarm

veil-house-designboom-full-8

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
an interior garden helps quiet the transition from the bustling city streets

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
allowing filtered light into all the living spaces and bedrooms

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
kitchen space with subtle, calming hues

veil-house-designboom-full-3

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
the perforated brick facade liberates the need for window treatments

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
creating vertical stratification

veil-house-designboom-full-5

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
colored flooring accentuates the living spaces

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
detail of terrazzo surface

veil-house-designboom-full-4

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
the Veil House by Paperfar transforms into a kind of lantern at evening time

a tapestry-like facade made of clay bricks weaves across paperfarm's veil house in taiwan
detail of brick pattern

veil-house-designboom-full-6

 

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bathroom
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staircase detail
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detail of facade
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living room with double height ceiling
living room with double height ceiling
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project info:

 

name: Veil House 

location: Kaohsiung, Taiwan

architecture: Paperfarm@paperfarminc

photography: Daniel Yao 

total area: 315 sqm

built area: 97 sqm 

completion year: 2023

number of floors: 5

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