Why remember...

photo by NiyaBas.com photography

Hmmm, I was about to start off this post in typical Ishka Designs style when it hit me: should I be posting about design when I should instead be remembering that terrible day back in 2001?  Do we dwell on form or function on the anniversary of a day when I watched solid design, form and function collapse to the ground? Or as I remember how friends struggled to escape the insanity of downtown Manhattan, witnessing things one hopes never to see in their lifetime or hear things they hope to desperately unhear.
photo by NiyaBas.com photography
Funnily enough, I think the answer is yes.  To remember the past, no matter the circumstance, is but the only way to create a brighter future and within architecture and design, its taking the lessons of how designers before us have best utilized space and how we can build upon that foundation. Our history and experiences allow us to better focus our design efforts: redefining and efficiently maximizing space for a better tomorrow.
Photo by NiyaBas.com photography
So let me return to the original intent of this post.  The featured spaces on our post are unrelated to 9/11 and New York, but my appreciation for them have definitely been inspired by all my experiences in urban dwelling in NYC, including that day. I've lived in and around NYC for the past 10 years, during which time I have developed a pretty good knack for efficiently utilizing small spaces.  I'm sure most urban dwellers can seriously relate to this.  But every now and again I am blown away by architects who take on the challenge purposefully, with flair and consciousness.

First up: I came across the work of Japanese architect, Yuusuke Karasawa, in the July edition of Interior Design magazine.  He turned a 900sf cube of a house into a dynamic, visually tricky space, that in my opinion is nothing short of amazing.  He utilized algorithms, light, and I guess a bit of fun house magic, to create a livable jigsaw puzzle inside an ordinary unassuming looking box.  My thoughts: genius! Yours? Read more here.
the exterior
angles - view of living area
angled kitchen
beautiful thin tread staircase
serene bathroom
Project Photography by Sergio Pirrone for Interior Design Magazine
Our second feature was posted on the incredible eco-conscious design blog Inhabitat.  This odd slice of land in Islington, London got transformed by Amenity Space.  An intriguing urban infill project that is only made better by the eco-conscious decisions that went into its creation.  Decisions such as a solar passive design (read more here) , a living sedum roof (green roof, read more here), recycled materials, an air-source heat pump, and sheep's wool insulation. Read more here.
intriguing interruption in the street façade
windows help with solar passive energy
efficiently beautiful kitchen/dining area
while not a fan of the bathroom colours I do appreciate the use of space
a slice of the neighbourhood.
Project images sourced from: www.inhabitat.com
I wonder what the neighbours think!?!

But back to remembering that day.  One of the lessons learned from our 9/11 experience is definitely one of appreciation and gratitude for what was once, what is now, and what will be.  Use your experiences to create beauty from nothing, find beauty in something, and definitely see beauty in everything. It's there.
Thanks to NiyaBas.com photography for "loaning" us these beautiful Brooklyn Bridge photos.