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Aerie House

Saul Kim

Advisor: Darin Johnstone

Darin Johnstone Architecture

SCI-Arc Fall 2017

Boyle Heights, Los Angeles

Selected for SCI-Arc NAAB Archive
Featured on SCI-Arc Spring Show 2017
Featured on Feeeld Publication



How different would the spatial experience be when volumes are deformed with collision of masses in a nested condition in comparison to a conventional idea of nesting in architecture?

This project encapsulates the rippling reverberations of interior and exterior conditions in order to produce an experiential oscillation of mass and void. Volumes are nested within one another, but they sometimes contract inward or expand outwards to intersect with their corresponding outer volumes to give punctures and create intimate mass to mass relationship within a single shell. The central figure naturally becomes circulation paths, entry points, vertical circulation and skylight.

Shell-in-shell concept from Sou Fujimoto explores the idea of having indoor yet outdoor space that isolates the building from its surroundings. Each shell is perforated with square openings that are potentially used for daylighting, ventilation and control of visual connectivity from inside to outside, and from outside to inside. Outermost shell serves as a boundary to the building, covering the entire living spaces and the site itself. Openings are strategically positioned to allow views from inside to outside, but not outside to inside. It also houses a garden and outdoor wood deck for communal activities.


"Sou takes advantage of the layers to blur the boundary between the outside and the inside. Interestingly, the sequence of layers did not translate directly to the level of privacy. I was experimenting with a less consistent spatial congruency, by manipulating the layers, forcing them to collide with one another at different points. It sometimes compresses the three layers into a single layer, meaning that it involves compression of time and space.

The way in which you would get to the center is different at every point. Sometimes you gotta cross three layers, but sometimes there are shortcuts. So the project dealt with the idea of ambiguity within layer hierarchy. Different layers collide on a plane to uncover new figures of facade and openings. This play of loose fit layers was later seen from a broader context of the topic of “fit” within architecture."

Aerie House - model image 1

1/4th Scale physical model of Aerie House

Interior/other model images of Aerie House

Aerie House - diagram 1

N house

Expansion & Intersection

Connection Inside-out

N House - diagram

N house - concept of nesting within architecture

Aerie House - diagram 2

Circulation from Inside-out

Aerie House - diagram 3

Division of Units and outdoor spaces

Aerie House - Axon 1
Aerie House - Axon 2

Axon on Site

Aerie House - Elevation 1

Axon on Site

Aerie House - Section


Aerie House - Floorplans

Site Plan

Ground Floor Plan

Third Floor Plan

Second Floor Plan

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