Bolwoning [1984]

Dries Kreijkamp

Dries Kreijkamp’s fascination with future living formally began a decade prior to the Bolwoning design, recalling digressions whilst producing crystal spheres for the Royal Dutch Glassworks: ‘We live on a sphere, we are born out of a sphere…why not live in a sphere?’

Fortunately a municipality in the southern Netherlands had just received a governmental subsidy directed towards experimental living in 1980 — and so Kreijkamp seized the moment to actualise his infatuations. Like Suuronen before him, he displayed a radicalism that was equal parts eccentric and poetic — underwritten with a stark rationalism aimed at offering a real form to accommodate a new reality. Much like the schemes presented by the House of the Future and Futuro, this was simplistic. A cylindrical element to the base served as a structural plinth akin to the pedestal in MIT’s design, but also accommodated utility and storage spaces. This structure’s open-ended circular top perimeter also operates as a mechanism to interlock the base and the upper volume — a three-storey fibreglass sphere with a 5.5m diameter. A staircase provides the only internal verticality and connects, both physically and visually, the cylindrical and spherical forms. As one spirals from the ground upwards a bedroom occupies a level, followed by a bathroom on a mezzanine space and finally a top living room section with a kitchen — offering a panoramic, naturally lit quality through a band of six circular pivot-style windows.

» «