Timeless Sentiment, Tel Aviv
An Israeli architect, and his designer wife built their family home in south Tel Aviv. They wanted to create a townhouse that would be timeless – no small feat, but definitely a necessary idea for creating permanent and desirable structures. Being an architect you constantly question yourself “will I like this tomorrow?” and if you design for yourself, you have to incessantly repress your fears that you will regret designs you made yesterday.
The architect wanted to accentuate the longevity of the building and made decisions that they thought would boost it’s liveability. The entrance to the building is on the short side, giving the home more privacy. The passageway through the house is kept alongside the shared party wall of the house as a series of stairways takes you up through the same spot in the house – much like terrace homes in London where the staircase was always kept alongside the home.
The interior is a notable combination of classic and modern design which takes into consideration two of the most important elements of designing a home: space to breath and comfort. The materials consist of wood concrete and metal. The colour palette is mostly neutrals of whites, blacks and charcoals giving those home comforts – pieces of furniture and family trinkets – an easily adaptable background. The furnishings and objects around the house were collected on trips to Scandinavia or were discovered items by local designers. Despite all of the modernity of the building it’s true triumph is that it makes this structurally contemporary space into a home full of life and sentiment, the owner states that one of the most valuable pieces in the house is a bowl covered in a lemon print, which they received from the lady who lives next door.
White Balance, Jaffa
The buildings in old Jaffa tell the stories of families during different generations; couples lived in first floor-apartments, and build additional floors as their children grew up. Time passed, and with changes in generation came changes in colors, materials and details of the Jaffa houses.
Israeli architect, Ilan Pivko, was aware of Jaffa’s architectural history when he designed a complex of buildings in Jaffa 14 years ago. Ilan Pivko preserved the environment’s story by keeping details, such as old windows, from the original neighborhood.
Dafna Kastiel, an Israeli industrial and interior designer, moved to this complex seven years ago. She wanted to live in Jaffa, outside of Tel Aviv, and still be part of the city life. Her apartment in Jaffa, with a view of the Jaffa port and sea, gave her a feeling of vacation which she emphasizes in her interior design – with white floors, curtains and walls. She further added a few pieces from her travels and the Jaffa market, to make the space more colorful and personal.
The apartment is quite big, divided into a bedroom and living space. It fits her needs for the moment, with the freedom to change if necessary.
Eclectic Decor, Tel Aviv
Abushdid, a new lounge restaurant located in a historical building on 16 Levontin Street, Tel Aviv, was designed by curators and owners of Design Space, Emmy Shahar and Salome Fakiel. Before its conversion into a modern lounge, Abushdid was once the home to Lea Abushdid and her husband, Itamar Ben Avi, who was the son of Eliezer Ben Yehuda, as well as the chief editor and journalist of Doar HaYom.
The story between the power couple started at 16 Levonton Street, in the 1920′s and was the starting point and inspiration to Emmy Shahar and Salome Fakiel.
Learning how to maintain the historical essence while adding a contemporary feel to the authentic building was an interesting challenge to work with. Emmy Shahar and Salome Fakiel were constantly active in the design process, creating an eclectic design. The selected furniture was made especially for Abushdid, the art was made by local Israeli arists, and the decor was found at Shuk Hapishishim in Yaffo. For the two designers, composition and consistency was the most important, and it was evident from the food and cocktails, to the graphics and interior design.
”To see people inside, moving, sitting, approaching, is also a reward. I mean, it’s working”, says Salome Fakiel.
Spartan Beauty, Tel Aviv
Currently located on Lillenbloom Street in south Tel Aviv, this stone structure was one of the firsts in Tel Aviv, built in 1909 by Mordechai Ben Gillel Hacohen, who was a dealer of timber and olive oil in Russia.
The architect Ori Goor came across the building when searching for flats for his newest project. He was confronted with five studio flats and decided he would convert them into one large space, using an ecological and minimalistic concept. He wanted to keep everything in its natural state, adding very few synthetic materials.
In the past, Ori Goor has focused on treating and polishing every detail of the interior space to achieve a “magazine look”, but after experimenting with stripping and exposing natural states in his previous apartment, he gained more confidence to go with this style for the new project.
The process involved removing walls, floors, ceilings, kitchens, bathrooms, as well as multiple layers of wall coverings until the original natural stone was exposed again. The windows are timber windows, imbedded into the old iron system, in a sense the new resembles the old.
As you can see in the photos, this minimalist concept was even applied to the amount of furniture added within the space. The space has been left open and airy to really appreciate the nature of the building.
“It’s about real minimalism. It is not defined by its appearance but only by its consumerist qualities.”
High Art Wild Heart, Tel Aviv
This building, which was built in the late 1940s, is located on Rothschild Boulevard. Hagit Burstein moved to this south central location, three years ago, after living in the North of Tel Aviv. Since she lived in New York in the late 80′s, it had been her dream to move to a loft style apartment such as this one.
As far as living in the southern part of Tel Aviv, Hagit feels well suited with the atmosphere and rhythm of the people. Her dream loft has not only become her home and office, but also a space for entertainment and hang outs. In addition to inviting her friends, the loft has served as a host for other people and events. To add a personal touch and feeling to her home, a variety of art pieces fill the space, from emerging and established artists.
Everyone who visits the loft agrees it reflects Hagit’s character, and gives the feeling of home. As Hagit says, “Everybody feels comfortable if the owner does.”
American Holiday, Highland Lakes, NJ
Located in Highland Lakes, NJ, the house was built in the late 1950s, and has since gone through several renovations. Originally, the area was developed in 1936 as a summer retreat for urban bourgeoisie, that in an hours drive from the Manhattan could find nature, open sky and tranquility. A typical local architecture based on variations of traditional log cabins, mostly with two bedrooms and two bathrooms. This property, however, was built on a double lot and has four bedrooms, two bathrooms,a sunroof (currently functioning as a table-tennis room) and a converted basement, which serves an amateur music studio. Over the years, the house was used as a vacation home, but also a permanent home. The current owner renovated it for his own use, and it functions as a country retreat, where his friends and family can get together and enjoy their leisure time.
Minimalistic Cube, Tel Aviv
Name> Barak Ravitz and Omer Frank
Occupation> Artist and architecture student
Residence> Florentine, Tel Aviv
Book> Textile by Orly Castel-Bloom and The Thirtieth Year by Ingeborg Bachmann
Food> Bourekas from the Carmel Market and Cheesecake from The Bakery
Building> Amir Center on Agron Street, Jerusalem by David Resnick and Bahad Ehad by Zvi Hecker and Eldar Sharon
Omer and Barak have been living in their apartment for almost three years, including some time abroad. They love their apartment, even though it is distant from the city, and has an unusual division of space. Every month they buy a new plant, compensating the mess and grayness outside.
The patterned floor has a dominant appearance, and is considered as a piece of furniture, says Omer and Barak, which is why their place is scarcely decorated. Most of their things has been given to them from their families.
The couple are always imaging themselves living in a white, minimalistic cube with exactly four objects – the minimum of what they need.
The heart of the house is the library. Omer and Barak will add more shelves to it every few months, until the books reach the ceiling.
Marble Delight, Kfar Shmaryahu
The original house was probably built in the late 1930′s in the village of Shmaryahu, an agricultural community for immigrants from Germany.
The house underwent various permutations over the years, and preserves something from all of them: a modest family house turned into a country mansion in the seventies, and later covered with Italian marble and fitted with outdoor hosting areas in the eighties.
The current residents made slight but elegant improvements to the house, fixing the infrastructure and replacing the kitchen and bathrooms. They tried as much as possible to maintain the history and the unique character of the house, restoring some of the original details.
The garden provides a layer of mystery to the house, serving as a reminder of its past splendor. The current residents wanted to preserve this feeling. Many new trees were planted but the garden seating areas were left as they are, in a semi-abandoned state.
The furniture has been with the residents for many years; Italian leather chairs passed down from their parents, a sofa and a table from New York, carpets from Turkey and Kazakhstan, paintings by artists Avner Ben-Gal, Yehudit Sasportas, Boyan, and photographs by Vanessa Beecroft, Nan Goldin, Taynth Berkeley and Andrea Serrano.
From Dawn to Dusk_Part Two, Tel Aviv
This post highlights Noemi Givon’s home as night falls, capturing the lights and shadows throughout the home. Check out the previous post to view photos of this beautiful structure in the daylight.
The Givon art forum opens on the weekend, functioning to the extent of a private gallery and museum, as well as, hosts events and exhibitions. The exhibition space is a part of the house, located at the street level, with a separate entrance, to practice autonomously.
From Dawn to Dusk_Part One Tel Aviv
Name> Noemi Givon
Occupation> Manages an art gallery and represents artists since 1974
Residence> Tel Aviv
Book> All the books by Donald Woods Winnicott. “He was an English child psychiatrist, pediatrician, and psychoanalyst, continued the way of Sigmund Freud and Melanie Klein. He developed play therapy for children and wrote several books, however, he expressed that his writings are original ideas and deviate from theory of Freud”.
Food> Lobster and Lamb chops
Building> Ben Gurion’s and Ayala Zacks’ houses
Noemi and her son Ben, live in Neve Tzedek, in a home that has been around originally since the 19th century. After 10 years of restoration and renovations planned and made by the architect Ori Glazer in conjunction with Nili Gal Mester, Arch, they were able to move in, and have been happily living there now for one year.
To grasp an ideal image of the success of this renovation, photos of the home in broad daylight have been included, highlighting every accent of the house. Next post will contain photos of the home to capture the elements right as night falls.
The structure reflects the classic construction of Jaffa, built of stone baring walls and ceilings made from limestone and flat arches of brick and galvanized steel. Its design reflects common residential typology of the urban middle class in Israel and Lebanon from the late 19th century to the early 30th century.
The facade of the original building was preserved accurately, and there were some other remains, such as the floor and parts of columns, that Noemi was able to keep. However, there were alterations to the interior to enhance the style and practicality. Each floor contains three large open spaces, which function also for an exhibition. With modular and dynamic walls, which are based on an axis, the residents have the opportunity to change the room division, as they like. These areas will be broad enough to accommodate events in a variety of mediums such as; sculpture, video, installation, architecture, painting, drawing, and new media.
The design reflects the resident’s passions for original Israeli art and mythological design objects by artists such as Mario Botta and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and custom made Venetian lamps and Ben’s skateboards.