A communist era studio apartment refurbishment by PRAKTRIK
The flat is located in a typical large-panel system building in Sofia. It consists of one multifunctional room, that operates as a living room and a bedroom at the same time, a kitchen, a bathroom, a corridor, and a large balcony divided into glazed and unglazed parts. This kind of buildings are very restrictive in terms of rearrangements because all walls are made of reinforced concrete and most of them are load-bearing; moreover, the budget did not allow replacement of the interior doors.
The goal of the refurbishment was to turn the apartment into a place appropriate for young people, providing enough flexibility at an affordable price. The decision was to turn all of the immovable “heritage” - walls, ceilings, floors, and doors, together with the appliances, into a passive achromatic background, emphasizing the flexible assemblable wooden furniture and lighting. The flexibility is enhanced by the possibility of combining the modules from the different rooms, turning the whole flat into a tricky human-scale tetris game, inspiring the name of the project which is a combination of “tetris” and “tricks”.
The biggest challenge was the main room which is supposed to accommodate many different functions – not only connected to working and sleeping but also to different social activities – from having dinner with friends to drinking tea and playing board games in more relaxed atmosphere. This requirement necessitated the adaptation of the bed to functions different from sleeping. It is the biggest furniture in the room and using it only as a bed would not leave space for placing sofas and low tables for example. The solution was to make it modular using five benches – three standard VBT and two standard VIB with backrests at the ends. The parquet flooring is not slippery providing enough friction and keeping the five modules together. The upholstery was designed in a way allowing transformations – from mattress to cushions. The rest of the furniture in the room follows the same dual-use concept, providing a lot of functional combinatorics.
The kitchen has a classic furniture arrangement typical for this kind of apartments, nevertheless the worktops are also assemblable and independent from the appliances, giving the possibility of rearrangements. The cabinets are also modular and equal to the ones in the corridor, bringing even more flexibility. They look decorative but their shape is actually very constructional and tectonic, providing a huge number of possible arrangements and assemblies. Their mobility is facilitated by the battens on which they are hung, eliminating the necessity of fastening them directly to the walls.
Designer: Petar Zaharinov
INTERACTIVE EXHIBITION OF ILLUSTRATIONS FOR CHILDREN SDW 2013
The exhibition is a selection of black and white illustrations of seven different artists. The interactivity is presented by the possibility for kids to color and modify all the pictures using their own imagination.
The structure of the exhibition is a modification of the one we designed for “Archeology backstage”. The modification allows the reduction of the main element types for the walls from four to just two and also the addition of horizontal floor structure giving more combinatorics.
The big element used for the walls is presented in two additional variants – with cutouts shaped as arcs giving the presence of passages and doors.
The labyrinth shape that the whole structure has allows its usage not only for coloring but also for hide-and-seek and other games.
Author and curator: Vicky Knysh
Structure: Petar Zaharinov, PRAKTRIK
(c) Vicky Knysh
Part of the kid's section of Sofia Design Week 2013
21.06.2013 – 30.06.2013 – Serdika Mall, Sofia
TRAVELING EXHIBITION FOR CHILDREN ADAPTED FOR ADULTS
The goal of the exhibition is to make children and adults empathetic to the subject of archeology in general and also to the current challenges it faces. By recreating different activities it involves, in the form of games, children imperceptibly turn into seekers for ancient artifacts. Adults are provided with plenty of text and visual information that can satisfy even the most inquisitive of them.
The graphic materials, designed by poststudio, are separated into two “layers”: upper - for children, and lower – for adults, giving maximum ease in perception of the information. Pottery, in the form of magnetic puzzles, stratigraphic profile made of foam, a sandbox full of buried artifacts, drawing boards, animations and video are just parts of the “children's layer” , which often attracts older people too.
Our contribution to the project is the structure - “labyrinth”. It is an assemblable “puzzle” made of plywood, with no need of screws and gluing and reminds of a fortress, a lego style game, or a temporary wooden structure similar to ones used during expeditions. Only four types of elements (fig. 1) are enough to form the whole assembly without the need of any tools. Two or three people and a working day are completely enough to move the exhibition from one place to another (see VIDEO). All furnishing, including the sandbox and the transparent boxes, are also assemblable structures that does not require any fixtures in order to be assembled.
It was first presented at Grand Mall, Varna – Bulgaria on 20.06.2011 and we were pleased that all children and adults enjoyed it a lot.
Authors: Bogdan Atanasov, Vesela Gercheva – New Bulgarian University
Graphic design: Poststudio
Structure and furnishing: PRAKTRIK
Art concept: Violeta Halvadjieva
With the financial help of foundation “America For Bulgaria”