Renzo Piano Makes Micro Modern
More often than not, tiny houses like the ones made famous by Tumbleweed Tiny House Company have a decidedly rustic vibe. If you want to live in one of these basic homes and you’re not into the shack-in-the-woods aesthetic, you might be out of luck. All that might be changing soon. Renzo Piano, one of the world’s leading architects, recently introduced a design that is the modern minimalist’s dream home.
The Diogene house, set up on the Vitra campus in Basel, Switzerland, is named after ancient Greek philosopher Diogenes, who, according to Designboom, “lived in a barrel to exalt simplicity through action, the home is a voluntary refuge that relishes a life outside of an existing infrastructure.” The home measures a mere 215 sq ft (20 sqm). In keeping with its namesake, the Diogene home is meant to provide the most essential elements of life–a sofa bed, small kitchen, shower and toilet. The rest of life takes place outside the home in “civic places” as Piano refers to them.
The aluminum-clad prototype home is intended to be completely off grid with solar water heaters, solar panels, rainwater collectors, a composting toilet, natural ventilation and triple glazed windows for great insulation. Ultimately, Piano sees Diogene being mass produced. Though it’s not trailer-based like US tiny houses, it’s compact dimension and off grid setup would lend itself to regulation-free living in much the same way tiny houses do.
We dig the philosophy of many tiny houses, but at times they can seem a bit monotonous in terms of design. Beyond its inovative features, Diogene proves that small can look any way you choose.
All images © designboom