Oak Cabin by Corpus Studio

Located in France, this contemporary oak cabin was designed in 2017 by Corpus Studio for Jitrois.

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The Oak Refuge is an architecture interior and decoration project. The cabin attemps to harmonise the rural atmosphere, genius loci, architecture and interior all together as one “total art work”; thus allowing the inhabitants to be truly immersed within a carefully designed emotive and enriching space, following the Gesamtkunstwerk principles of the early 1900s Austrian collective, the Wiener Werkstätte and later inspirations like the Bauhaus movement.

The clear separation of the interior spaces and functions, defined by five interconnected modular cabins which each have one single programme, is emphasised by two giant, wall-sized, sliding doors dividing the central public spaces; giving the possibility to isolate each modular cabin, temporarily bringing back the feeling of being in a tiny cabin, reinforcing the cabin typology aspect requested by the client. In the same way the space oscillates between a contemporary, open-plan and a traditional, closed-format interior; the materials and textures chosen for the finishes and furniture intentionally juxtapose the old against the new, the rough against the smooth, the comfortable against the austere. The house exemplifies local artisan work, often hand-crafted with great care and attention to detail.

To capture views and also to draw in light that creates strong shadows at different times of the day, highlighting the sculptural form of the cabin interior, prominant glazing in the form of pivoting windows and doors flank diametrically opposed corners of the house as well as the skylights that feature at the peak of each roof. All of the vertical windows can be closed off by operable exterior building façade elements like board awnings which can be closed to make a hermetic space in severe weather conditions or when the cabin is left uninhabited for long periods of time. These awnings double as sunshades in sunny weather. Returning to the principle cabin typology, the central and quintessential gathering spot of this cabin is the fireplace; it is designed as a glorifired pit, featuring a ceramic suspended smoke canopy, resembling the buttressed trunk of a great forest tree.

Visualizations courtesy of Corpus Studio

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- by Matt Watts