Didomestic apartment by Elii architecture office. Every house is a theater. A project for the complete refurbishment of an attic in downtown Madrid. The scope covers from the development of a customised functional proposal for a user that is turning a new leaf to the rehabilitation of the structure, the insulation, the facilities and the modernisation of the existing construction systems.

-text by the authors

The selected approach removes all obstacles from the floor to provide the greatest possible flexibility. Two basic elements are used: firstly, the central core, comprising the staircase, some shelves and the larder. The core is at the centre of the main space under the mansard roof. It connects the access floor and the space under the roof and allows the natural lighting coming through the roof into the living room. Secondly, there are two side strips for the functional elements (kitchen, bathroom, storage space and domestic appliances).

This basic arrangement is complemented by two strategies that provide flexibility to the domestic spaces.

Firstly, the moving panels that are integrated into the core and run along guide rails. These panels can be used to create different arrangements, such as adding an extra room for a guest, separating the kitchen from the living room area or opening the whole floor for a party.

The panels have transparent sections so that the natural lighting coming through the mansard roof can reach this space.

Secondly, the secret trap doors that are integrated into the ceiling of the access floor and into the floor of the mezzanine and that house the rest of the domestic functions. The ceiling doors are opened with handles fitted on the walls. These handles actuate pulleys that lower part of the furniture (such as tables and the picnic benches, a swing or the hammock) or some complementary functions and objects (such as the disco ball, the fans to chill out on the hammock or an extra shelf for the guest room).

In addition, the floor of the space under the roof has a series of invisible doors that can be opened to alter the functionality of the raised space where the bedroom area is (these spaces house the dressing table, the tea room and the storage spaces for the bathroom).

All these elements are integrated within the floor and the ceiling and they appear and disappear at the user’s whim. The secret trap doors and the sliding panels complement the basic configuration, fit the needs of the moment and provide different home layout combinations.

– Click! >Play. Didomestic is a space that has been conceived to turn a new leaf. It is a flexible space where everyday life can be rehearsed.

Experimenting with oneself.

– Black box. The stage area in a theatre (also known as the ‘black box’) is the architectural space where anything can happen. Didomestic is the stage within a domestic theatre, it is a black box. Your house can be a dance floor one day and a tea room the next.

Living backstage.

– The script. In this domestic theatre, life itself is the script. The architecture is the space where everyday scenes are played.

Every day is a rehearsal.

Blackboxing. We are living through days of profound changes, when the black boxes of cities are being opened and households are one of the essential stages for these transformations. We are constantly witnessing how the things that used to be invisible are invisible no more. However, in parallel to the visibilisation (deblackboxing) process, we seek architecture that not only reveals these changes, but that can also be used to rehearse them, test them, experiment with them and create prototypes (blackbloxing) of them. Let’s blackbox (in the theatrical sense, that is, let’s stage) the spaces, habits and relationships.

Every house is a theatre.


Credits & Details

Architects: elii – Uriel Fogué + Eva Gil + Carlos Palacios

Team: María Sole Ferragamo, Miguel Galán, Pablo Martín de la Cruz

Client: Dido Fogué

Const. Company: Dionisio Torralba Construcciones

Photography:  elii (maquetas), Imagen Subliminal (Miguel de Guzmán + Rocío Romero)  

Model: elii – Inmaculada Mariscal, Leonor Acero

Area:  57,60 m2

Location: Madrid

Check out elii’s project Yojigen Poketto here