Light-studded concrete
May 9, 2016

It is a minor debate often conducted between architects: Is less really more or is less simply less, or, (we recall how Robert Venturi provocatively quipped “Less is bore”) is less perhaps even boring? The single-family home in Düsseldorf’s Ludendorf district provides a clear statement on the matter: A firm focus on only a few materials, precision in the execution, and a perfect finish. This combination makes for a building that even in 20 years or so will look neither boring nor worn out – but simply plain and dignified. So in this instance, less is most certainly more because it is enduring and classic.

On approaching this building you get an inkling that architect Georg Döring and his client favor a style of building that emphasizes the materials: The ground floor is clad with black textured steel, while the first floor is insulated with a complex, thick sgraffito. Inside, smooth transitions and views out over the countryside make for a sense of real spaciousness. In particular the interior design boasts a precise choice of materials and perfect execution down to the smallest of details. Concrete in varying surface finishes dominates the rooms. Thanks to their flat shape the square-shaped module Q LED ceiling luminaires by Nimbus fit unobtrusively into the minimalist, elegant design and ensure even, basic lighting for all the rooms. Spaces were even left for the curtain tracks, something which was surely a challenge for the builders.

What makes the sculptural staircase so special is the contrast between materials and surfaces: Expanses of smooth black steel are juxtaposed with the vibrant, slightly rough structure of the concrete walls. Floors of untreated oak lend the rooms a very cozy feel. Moreover, the owners relied on a modern, energy-efficient heating technology. Apart from the consistent use of LED-luminaires by Nimbus in all rooms, triple glazing, thick mineral insulation and a solar installation for heating water make for prime energy efficiency levels. Nor did the owners forgo convenience as regards their installations: Like the heating and appliances in the house the luminaires by Nimbus can also be remotely controlled via a BUS system. (rw)

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Highly coherent in the choice of color and material: From its street side the house in Düsseldorf has a closed-off frontage. Photo © Michael Reisch

Facing the garden the house is markedly more open. Triple glazing and a thick layer of mineral sgraffito ensure an excellent energy consumption figures.
Photo © Michael Reisch

Views outside and extensive floor-to-ceiling windows facing the slope make the storeys appear extremely spacious. Photo © Michael Reisch

The extremely flat and minimalist Nimbus LED luminaires emphasize the sense of an uncluttered space. Photos © Michael Reisch

The module Q LED luminaires by Nimbus, ensure even lighting in all the rooms.
Photo © Michael Reisch

Steel and fair-faced concrete: The stairwell is shaped by the appealing contrast in materials. Photo © Michael Reisch

Wood and concrete: In the bathroom, simple materials likewise combine with Nimbus LED luminaires that boast a pared-down shape. Photo © Michael Reisch

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