The iconic animation My Neighbor Totoro by Studio Ghibli is highly praised for its originality and for the beautiful way in which it transmits deep emotions. It’s a wonderfully imaginative story about meaningful relationships, about humanity and nature. It’s still a wonderful source of inspiration even more than 30 years after its release. In 2021 CplusC Architectural Workshop worked on the Totoro House, a project which was comprised of the renovation and expansion of a family house located in Australia.
Initially, the existing house was separated from the garden and one of the objectives of this project was to remedy that and to create a stronger bond between the house, its inhabitants and nature. Another main objective was to update the existing house and to add an extension to it in a way that allows inhabitants to feel close to one another even when they’re in different spaces or enjoying different activities.
Translating these concepts into something tangible, into architecture and interior design was an inspiring challenge for the team. One of the strategies they used was to minimize and in some cases altogether remove the boundaries between some of the interior spaces as well as between the house and the beautiful landscape which surrounds it. The living area, dining room and kitchen were combined in one big space and this area was also extended outwards creating an exterior social area. Aesthetically, it’s the large circular windows that stand out the most. They’re a beautiful design element and they also add a playful and fantasy-inspired vibe to the house as a whole.
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