category_outlined / Art & Architecture

Dwell January/February 2019

Dwell is the unique modern architecture and design magazine for people who believe that good design is an integral part of real life. Get Dwell digital magazine subscription today.

United States
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6 Issues


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bold perspectives

The Roman architect and engineer Vitruvius asserted that society should look to nature to create things that are firmitas, utilitas, venustas—solid, useful, beautiful. Nearly two thousand years later, in 1896, Chicago School affiliate and pioneer of the skyscraper Louis Sullivan distilled Vitruvius’s credo to its essence: “Form ever follows function.” Those four words, heard through the halls of 20th-century architecture—and later stricken of the word “ever”—became a foundational doctrine of modernism, and eventually shorthand for modernism itself. Funny how the basic concept dates back to antiquity. Good design really is timeless. In our homes, kitchens and bathrooms are the areas where function is most pronounced. These rooms need to perform—and we want them to look good doing it. This is especially true when the people who own them make their living, say, hosting…

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JOURNEY BY DESIGN: AUSTIN, TEXAS Our new travel series heads to ATX, a creative mecca bursting with boutiques, modern eateries, music venues, and outdoor adventures. Get our recommendations at TOP INSTAGRAMS Our most popular recent posts include a barn-inspired South African home and a soothing spa-like bathroom in Melbourne. See more at VIDEO HOME TOURS Our coverage of outstanding modern homes doesn’t just end with these pages. Watch our videos to further explore these inspiring residences and hear what their owners have to say about them. POLL: In building your dream home, would you opt for traditional construction or prefab? 63% Traditional 37% Prefab PHOTOS: MATTHEW WILLIAMS (HOME TOUR); MARSEL ROOTHMAN (SOUTH AFRICA); DEREK SWALWELL (MELBOURNE). ILLUSTRATION: PETER OUMANSKI…

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dwell asks

What’s the smallest space you’ve ever lived in? Inspired by a tiny home vacation rental in Texas Hill Country featured in this issue (p. 54), we asked our online community about experiences living with less. A 217sf apartment in Tokyo. Every piece of it was laid out perfectly. I had a bedroom, living room, full kitchen, full bathroom, and even a laundry area with a washing machine. Back in North America, we take space for granted and hence tend to waste it. @ideaengine on Instagram All I’m saying is that I live in a 750sf apartment now and it’s too BIG. @curb_it on Instagram We live in a 540sf shipping container conversion. Started as just the two of us, but now we are welcoming a baby and have no plans to upsize. @miss_plant on Instagram 400sf—my husband…

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spanish intuition

“We envisioned our future to be set up like this. We wanted our own studio, and we needed space.” Masaaki Higashi, architect and resident Looking to upsize from their condo in Barcelona’s Gràcia district, Masaaki Higashi and Esther Mir had their eye on a two-story apartment that was wedged at the back of a former printing warehouse next door. But when it turned out that the two spaces—partially attached, partially separated by a courtyard—were listed together, they had to reconsider. “It was rundown, dark, and divided,” recalls Masaaki of his first impression of the warehouse, the ground floor of a multistory apartment building. But after some thought, Masaaki, a Japanese-born architect, and Esther, an artist from Minorca, realized that owning the combined 2,700 square feet would allow them to headquarter Mas-aqui, the…

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nina compton

My husband‚ Larry Miller‚ and I live in a loft-style apartment above our new restaurant‚ Bywater American Bistro. People think I’m crazy for living upstairs from my work‚ but for me‚ it’s actually convenient. I don’t have to drive anywhere. I can go downstairs and check on people. And if I need a break‚ I can just come upstairs and decompress for ten minutes before going back down. I like it a lot. The kitchen was already here when we moved in‚ and it’s pretty efficient. We wanted to keep the space open and informal‚ so the main thing we did was buy this wood table. We wanted something that was very simple and approachable. We have breakfast and dinner at it‚ and when I have friends over they can sit…

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samin nosrat

I moved here when I was 29 and never would have guessed that I’d still be here when I was 39. I’ve slowly upgraded the kitchen. There’s always that balance when you’re a renter. You’re like‚ “I’m going to save my money so I can fix up the place where I’ll finally live.” But at some point‚ I just had to say‚ “Well‚ I do live here‚ and I have to make it enjoyable.” Two years ago‚ I put in upper cabinets from IKEA. I don’t even understand where I stored food before. They’re chock full. My stove is just the jankiest‚ and I used to resent it so much. There’s not enough power to cook a lot of stuff at the same time. I have to just figure it out. As…