Designer    Case Study 14 Feb 2018

Take a virtual tour of this minimalist housing solution – known as the ‘Swiss-army-house’

This 9 sq m living space is equipped with every comfort needed for everyday life and characterized by a strong adhesion to minimalist principles, the ‘less is more’ movement and a more sustainable lifestyle.

The result of an artistic-architectural research project directed by Leonardo Di Chiara in collaboration with Tinyhouse University and supported by numerous internationally renowned technical partners, aVOID is raising social awareness of new housing policies such as the creation of ‘urban migratory neighbourhoods’.

Di Chiara said: “During all my life I have lived in a very small room in my parents’ apartment in Pesaro, Italy. I was forced every day to learn how to organise my space, fit all of my belongings inside the few cabinets, and to adapt my space to host my friends to play or later to study.”

Fully mobile, aVOID is currently parked in the middle of Berlin, inside the garden of Bauhaus-Archiv / Museum of Design, but Leonardo Di Chiara has plans to transport it to Copenhagen, the Netherlands and Paris before returning home to Italy.

Di Chiara added: “I grew up with a minimalist lifestyle, which certainly influences my design. From past experience in my room, I learnt the importance of emptiness – functionally and physiologically speaking. This is why I started developing transformable furniture where everything can be hidden into the wall surface when it is not in use, having, as a result, a void ready to be used again.”

The virtual tour below shows the ingenious home, where walls can fold out to reveal a bed, a kitchen complete with a hob and cupboard space, or a table and chairs for entertaining guests.

“By itself, it teaches and pushes you to deprive yourself of unnecessary things, to consume less water and less energy, to put back your clothes in their place and to wash the dishes immediately after eating,” Di Chiara surmised.

Leonardo Di Chiara /