Dukič

Minimalist apartment for two, scheme design

Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2019

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City apartment for two, designed as an interface in Ljubljana's eminent Dukič apartment blocks.

Dukič housing blocks are the first example of the free-standing residential building in Ljubljana, built in the mid-1930s. In the spirit of early functionalism, they were designed by architect Jože Sivec between 1935-36, who instead of building closed perimeter housing blocks, as it was the prevailing trend in the city center of Ljubljana at the time, proposed an alternative for the assigned location adjacent to Argentine Park and distributed three free-standing blocks on the outer edges of the site.

 

Five to six floors high apartment blocks with central staircase and elevator had at that time extremely high-quality floor plans that could be easily adapted for different purposes. The apartments once intended for the middle class and officials are today considered as one of the most prestigious residential locations for living in Ljubljana, due to its proximity to the city center, two city parks and other cultural-commercial activities.

 

The apartment was heavily remodeled in the past, full of partition walls, paneling and other non-original furniture and materials that degraded the overall ambient, optically reduced the size of the space and obscured the magnificent views of downtown Ljubljana from an otherwise excellent south-west location.

 

Above all, the clients wished to clear the space of everything superfluous, tear down all the non-load-bearing walls and to open the apartment in all its size, with the exception of bedroom, bathroom and a smaller guest toilet. They wished for their apartment to be designed as an "interface" – as something that works well, is beautiful and easy to use, but at the same time not overly stylized or visible to the eye. They enjoy collecting art, possess a lot of interesting furniture pieces, which they wish to freely arrange to their liking.

 

With this in mind, we left the apartment empty, defining merely the fixed elements such as bedroom, bathroom, guest toilet and kitchen. The only “audacity” we allowed ourselves was to “elevate” the bathroom from the so called “servant space” to “a served space” (as defined by L. Kahn) and introduce a centrally located washroom, which opens to the corridor with a semi-transparent glass wall, further illuminating the living space. Everything else the clients wished to arrange by themselves.

 

Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Project date: 2019
Completion date: 2020

Total floor area: 132 m2

Type: residential

Client: private

Project team: SVET VMES, d.o.o.: Jure Hrovat, Ana Kreč, Katja Paternoster, Sebastjan Oblak