Duplex Tibbaut is two derelict apartments of 55 square metres (592 square feet) each in downtown Barcelona, Spain that transformed into a spacious two-storey home. Spanish studio Raúl Sánchez Architects designed this astonishing duplex in 2016-2017.
The client’s requirement was to concentrate the main living spaces on the mezzanine floor and expand them on the ground floor with other spaces with more diffuse functions that could be used as living room, study, work area…
The proposal is clear and direct: in the middle of the space, insert two 2-meter side squares rotated 45º over the dominant axis, their vertices overlapping without touching the original walls, and extruded through both floors. A simple and resounding arrangement in which two ideal shapes, two perfect extruded squares, are imposed on the existing irregularity and arrange all the floor space without the need for any other means or elements. One of the squares will hold the stairs communicating both floors, and the other will house the bedroom on the upper floor and the toilet and office spaces on the ground floor. The very rotation of these squares results in the specialization of the space around it without needing any additional doors or enclosures (except those that provide the required privacy to bathrooms and bedrooms), since the new volumes, as they approach and move away from the perimeter walls, define these areas.
On the ground floor, three existing paintings of Brazilian origin have been preserved, and the proposed inside circulation places them right at the stairs exit. These paintings are the reason the client, of Brazilian origin herself, initially decided to buy these two properties and undertake the project.
— Raúl Sánchez Architects
Plans, models, and a photo of the work process:
Photographs by José Hevia
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