Aban’s House / USE Studio
Aban’s House / USE Studio
Story of a birth
A heartbeat rhythm… first clue of the presence of an individual in our lives… Boom, Boom… a sound which seems to be the life itself, a pause between two sounds, an instant between being and not being… a vivid image on the ultrasound machine’s display, showing there’s another human being sleeping in the mother’s body… it was unbelievable just a few layers of flesh had created such a secure resting place away from the chaos!
- Congratulations… it’s a girl!
On that busy afternoon, we got out of the doctor’s office; we were drowned in our beautiful, colourful dreams; walking toward our apartment, a sudden horn and we were dragged out from that peaceful, sweet dream -which seemed to be remained from the mama’s womb- to the real world by a taxi driver! How it is possible to get used to this rush and fast rhythm of today’s life?
On the same night we decided to sell our 130 m² apartment and prepare a house somewhere in the city. Now that everything is passing so fast and the world is going crazy, there are bad news all over the world, what is the solution to deal with this mad house? If we are accepting that life is like a heartbeat an instant between paradoxes so what is in opposite of this rush? Where is the calm, pause and peace? Should architecture follow or should it be a balm on this wound? Now that we are supposed to coordinate the rhythm of our steps to this new rhythm of the world, perhaps it is possible to build a space to regain the lost calm and peace. Maybe a gift for the coming child is not letting her grow in one of those boxes with holes toward the neighbors and no yards to live in, but to create a space to have a joyful life.
Two months have passed and we are about to see a land adjacent to the turquoise dome of Jameh Mosque of Abbasi. From the southern east corner of the Naqsh-e-Jahan sq. we entered the labyrinth of the neighborhood; an urban fabric which is the true heir of Isfahan, narrow pathways, twisted. We are on track and facing paradoxes: light and shadow, mass and voids and tightness and wideness, All in consensus and continuity as Rumi said: Day and night appear to be two opposites but they are both truthful. The place was a reminder of the heartbeat, “being and not being”. I wasn’t a stranger in the neighborhood, a couple of years ago I was a partner on the reviving project of this neighborhood which wasn’t successful. Now all those houses are either ruined or have become storages for Bazaar. Some of the blocks were demolished by the municipality and a few have turned to B & Bs. But what was eye-catching was the absence of a human residence and his daily life influence. Isn’t the presence of human and his settlement with all the meanings it brings, the only solution to revive such urban fabrics?
Passing by the Qajari houses, which are modestly showing nothing from the inside except for a couple of needed light holes! Passing through “the dark alley” a unique sabath with different heights with the play of light and shadow. Passing by the 30-40 year old houses smelling their food odour, hearing their dialogue it was like a 100 years of marching! We learnt a lot! Now the question is “is it possible to create a new specie in between of this introversion-extraversion to be a resting place for the contemporary human which is neither this, nor that, but both!
We reached the land; access was from the south, 250 m², 30 m in length, width of 7m on south 10m on north. The shape was a repetition of the surrounding organic texture with more width and silence as we went deeper toward north. On the west end was the shameless dome of Jameh mosque who was the first to greet us!
Now that we are the owner of the land we are digging our life, our social life, our memories, our home memories in which we grew up… what is the relation between life and house? What is life expecting from the house and what is house going to add to this life?
It is been a while since we are awake but still daydreaming in that moment in between of waking and getting up! Gazing to the ceiling thinking of our coming child, our new life… it is not the first time we are starting a project, but this time is harder and more enjoyable! It is not always us who start but it is the client who has dreamt and has made his magical world and on some part we were added! Now it is us who is making a dream where we are going to live in, where our child is going to grow in, a dream which is going to be a home not a sleeping place, to be a resting place, its yard is not going to be parking but a living space which you can reach by stretch a leg, sit in it, watch the blue sky and fly, a space to be woven in to our lives… its living room is a place to enjoy the time together alongside its Shah-Neshin to spend your alone time with others, the cooking space is not the cook’s office but a place to cook and eat and drink and chat in. The only spaces which have names are the rooms, they are not bedrooms they are living rooms; our room, child’s room and the guest room. Isn’t this connection the pure resemblance of the exact connection between us and the child?
Rolling in bed and I am thinking that home should be not only a pause point in contrast with today’s rush, but also be dynamic, be full of different experiences a place where you can get lost and be found again and again…it should have the same blood of the city in the veins…
- It is not moving!
- What is not moving?
- The child! Hospital!!!!
On 9th of November, Aban was born, the child who is going to live in this house and the house named after her “Aban’s House”.
Brick has been the main building material in central Iran (with a dry and hot weather) for thousands of years, not only a structural element but also as an ornamental and finishing layer. It is very well adapted to different weather conditions and its main consistant material (earth) is available everywhere. And also as a nature friendly studio our aim is to affect our surrounding less so using a 100 percent natural material (brick) is the best approach.
The projects location is in an old and historical neighborhood, so in order to not being an outsider and to respect the context; using brick as the main material is not out of logic.
In our opinion these bricks could be an appropriate choice. Neverteless, you can find more great bricks from our partners here: materials.brickarchitecture.com