A sharp-eyed creation

Nick Myall
Tuesday 10 Jan 2017

Known for his innovative work with concrete Moon Hoon has created an apartment block with the appearance of an owl

South Korean architect Moon Hoon designed this irregularly shaped concrete structure in South Korea. Several apartments and a library are laid out throughout the building and a concrete frame that extends from the window on the top floor has created the appearance of the menacing face of an owl. This is particularly highlighted at night when the upper rooms are illuminated.

Commenting on the structure Moon Hoon says: “Although I am afraid that if I call it the owl, it will continue going by this nickname and it will be regarded within this context, I would nevertheless like to call it the owl. If you look at the building from the roadside, you may associate the shape formed by the angles of the setback regulation with big head and two eyes.”

The bedroom of the top level apartment is arranged on a split level, with a mezzanine bedroom protected by a net railing. It also features a small circular skylight above the bed which offers views of the sky. A staircase runs down one side of the structure creating the appearance of a bird’s wing.

Moon Hoon goes on to say: “Amazingly, the building looks exactly like an owl when you see it from the rear side of the building after passing through a walkway. The staircase is a wing and the windows of the child’s room are the eyes within a head. In addition, the client is working in the security industry, which makes him stay up all night with glaring eyes, so it is appropriate that the house really looks like an owl.”

Two more apartments are found on the lower floors of the block with faceted glass creating an imposing entrance to the building. 

Moon Hoon concludes by saying: “Sometimes, admirers of my paintings commission me for an architectural project. This is the case here. My clients usually have very strong personalities and are open-minded towards new things. In addition, many of them are young people who want a special space for their children, and this helps in the creation of a house full of quirks and fun. The view of the night sky can be seen through a small circular skylight from the bed in the child’s room, and the hole in the floor leads to a low playing space that is not included in the building coverage or total floor area. Although I designed it imagining a child climbing down a pipe through the opening like a firefighter, I had to give it up as the client and their parents became concerned at the time this added to completion.”

Nick Myall

News editor

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South Korea

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