Originally from the USA, architects Graft have been making their mark in over five continents, with stunning buildings fit to serve any purpose in any location. Culture Trip brings you ten of their finest structures.
The organic form of Autostadt Roof and Service Pavillion is beautiful and functional. The leaf-like shape is designed to protect the area from the elements while still allowing light to permeate like a rainforest canopy. Bridging land and sky, the soaring curve is stunning yet welcoming. Minimalism in its purest form without walls, windows or ornamentation, the aesthetic curve the product of an engineering mind and an architects soul.
Autostadt, Stadtbrücke, Wolfsburg, Germany, +49 800 288678238
Bringing the natural world back into Tokyo, AO Project is a residential complex that unites the urban and organic in its design. Lines of cubic sophistication blended with unruly nature is embodied in the sleek glass panels and turfed sections of this building. With elegant contours to rival Art Nouveau and upper levels that form a ‘living hill’, the AO Project is an urban oasis. With increasing environmental awareness, over the next few years, we may see a few more buildings like this sprouting up in the midst of our busy cities.
MIR NOLA translating as ‘Make it Right, New Orleans’ is a foundation that builds ‘sustainable homes, buildings and communities for people in need’. These homes give the pre-fab a new lease of life making vital, functional homes full of character and New Orleans style. Camelbacks were originally a method of adding a partial second story to homes in generally low income areas. These chic, space age, modernist homes make a statement, make a difference, make it right.
MIR NOLA, 912 Magzine St, New Orleans, LA, USA, +1 504-620-3200
Winner of the European Prize for Architecture 2011, Wünsdorf’s church is a crystalline fragment of beauty. This multifunctional building is part-time church, part-time opera house that reinvents the traditional soaring spire into a fairy tale mountain of ice designed to react with the stunning surrounding landscape. Inspired by the Sermon on the Mount ‘the building defines a natural stage with a scenic background, a place where people may gather in prayer under the sky.’ Kirche Wünsdorf is a prime example of poetry in architecture.
This alpine hotel complex will be a subtly beautiful addition to the mountainscape upon its completion in the next few years. The local population were heavily involved in the selection of the buildings design ensuring that it will be well received by many. The verticle wooden slats resemble the trees of the alpine forests while the strong geometric lines mimic the great angular mountains of the region. This is a building to watch. Get your skis ready for its eventual completion.
Hotel Lofer, Lofer 304, Austria, +43 6588 8306
Targeted for completion in 2016 the Changbaishan Ski Jumps will be another stunning addition to the mountain architecture of Graft. Commissioned after a government initiative to create ‘tourism formation zones’ in the increasingly affluent China. When the project is complete the Graft’s ski jumps will be the emblem of the biggest ski resort in Asia. Following the forms of snow drifts and glaciers these momentous works will be the perfect icon of a burgeoning tourism nation.
One of Graft’s smallest projects, the Solarkiosk has the potential for the greatest impact. Winner of the German Design Award 2015, the Solarkiosk is a self-reliant kiosk for off-the-grid rural locations. Currently found in Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Ghana and Germany, the Solarkiosk is an ongoing project delivering sustainable answers to some of the world’s most rural locations. Designed as a lightweight ‘kit of parts’, the Solarkiosk can be easily transported and assembled in remote global locations delivering a place of commerce, socializing and livelihood to rural communities in need.
So many of us are terrified of the dreaded dentist, but Kinderdentist Mokaberri eradicates the cold, austerity of whitewashed walls and the smell of disinfectant in this dental practice for children. The undulating blue interior is clean and fresh, but not scary and formidable. This imaginative space is inspired by the ocean and even has fish swimming across the treatment room walls. This is a reassuring, friendly place rebranding a visit to the dentist from negative and painful to colorful and exciting.
Kinderdentist Mokaberri, Kollwitzstraße 64, Berlin, Germany, +49 30 40505750
Like a Modernist secret spy hideout, the Bird Island Villas in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia are breathtaking family homes. With an awareness of sustainable, environmentally friendly design, Graft designed these villas with the warm climate in mind. With vast shaded and ventilated outdoor areas surrounding a cooler living space the silicon glass skin casts subtle shadows through its translucency, perfecting the internal temperature balance. The dynamic form of the villas reflects the poetic movement of water in its elegant, undulating shapes – the embodiment of tranquility.