Minarc

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Minarc is an award winning design studio recognized internationally for a unique approach which embraces contemporary design and employs innovative materials and technologies, while adhering to sustainable architectural practices and design standards.

Principals Erla Dogg Ingjaldsdottir, Assoc. AIA and IIDA, and Tryggvi Thorsteinsson, Assoc. AIA, derive much of their inspiration from the unassuming, austere beauty and otherworldly natural features of their native Iceland, the land of fire and ice. Wide-open spaces absent of barriers and integrated living spaces are key elements in each Minarc project.

Minarc is located in Santa Monica, CA and was established by Ingjaldsdottir and Thorsteinsson in 1999. The work of their practice ranges from small-scale renovations to new construction, in residential, commercial and public settings. Each project shares an emphasis on the unity of interior and exterior spaces through a greater utilization of natural light, establishment of outdoor living areas, and artistically incorporated views of the surrounding natural environment.

Design Philosophy[edit]

Minarc has gained considerable recognition for its holistic, environmentally aware approach that influences decisions concerning what materials to use or not. This includes the noticeable absence of paint, tiles and carpet, as well as the energy-conscious use of natural cross-ventilation in place of artificially forced air systems. The innovative use of reclaimed wood, recycled glass and rubber tires, cement panels and sustainable materials are another hallmark of Minarc designs.

Complementing these eco-conscious decisions is the use of warm, natural materials such as walnut, birch and ipe, a durable South American wood that can last up to half a century. This holistic approach to design through the use and development of innovative materials and application of sustainable practices has earned the firm numerous awards and accolades including, most recently, two 2013 AIA LA Restaurant Awards and a 2013 Gold Nugget Award for its work on the ION Hotel and its Silfra Restaurant and Northern Lights Bar.

Projects[edit]

Greenfield Living[edit]

Picture: Greenfield Living

Los Angeles, CA

• Simplistic Eco-conscious design that is focused on functionality and creating a breathing family environment.

• The house is oriented on the site for optimum advantage of natural light and cross ventilation.

• Maximum use of natural light to cut down electrical cost.

• Conscious effort in using only materials in their most organic form.

• No use of chemicals, carpets, tiles or paint.

• Exterior panels contain 30% recycled materials.

• Heated patio for outdoor dining maximizing indoor/outdoor living.

• Floor material connected in an unobtrusive manner to increase floor plan flow and space.

• Design and use of color inspired by dramatic landscape to create contrasting stimulating interior. The orange (volcanic) kitchen island creates a multi-functional gathering point in the heart of the house. The blue (liquid rubber) staircase (waterfall) combines elements of strength and infinity. • Use of black lava to create visual contrast and to enhance the exteriors.

• Steel indow sill in family room creates an additional seating area with magnetic cushions that can be rearranged as needed.

• Front windows glass extends to second floor creating external railing for upstairs bedroom.

• Inexpensive recycled silicon rubber material used for bathroom sinks chosen for its great sustainability.

• Material manufactured from recycled tires is used on kitchen cabinetry and kitchen chairs, creating an elegant kitchen unaffected by normal wear and tear of family life.

• The “disappearing” kitchen chairs are easily stored under island to maximize use of space.

• Light design in I structural beam in order to make indoor use of structure and create ambiance.

• Upstairs bookshelf functions as railings/barriers between floor plans.

• Headboard in master bedroom echoes kitchen island and functions as storage for clothing.

• Pebble stones on master bedroom balcony floor absorb the warmth of the sun creating a healthy reflexology surface beneficial for walking.

• Outdoor sleeping area for healthy living

Rainbow House[edit]

Pictures: Rainbow House

Santa Monica, CA

• Re-purposed, re-used, re-cycled 5-unit apartment building converted to a single-family residence by remodeling less than 50% of the existing structure

• Simple Eco-conscious design that is focused on functionality and creating a healthy breathing family environment.

• The design elements are oriented to take optimum advantage of natural light and cross ventilation.

• Maximum use of natural light to cut down electrical cost.

• Interior/exterior courtyard allows for natural ventilation as do the master sliding window and living room sliders.

• Conscious effort in using only materials in their most organic form.

• No paint – No tile – No carpet – No forced air (AC/HV)

• Light reflecting off glass railings bathe the house in rainbows

• Solar thermal radiant floor heating throughout the house

• Solar thermal domestic water heating

• Wood beams in the courtyard atrium using salvaged wood from original structure.

• Heated patio and fireplace for outdoor dining maximizes indoor/outdoor living. The courtyard veranda and hammock chairs off the playroom further connects the indoors and outdoors.

• Floor material connected in an unobtrusive and whimsical manner to increase floor plan flow and space.

• Design and use of color inspired by dramatic landscape to create contrasting stimulating interior. The recycled wood kitchen island creates a multi-functional gathering point in the heart of the house. The orange back splash (volcanic) The blue (recycled glass) under the staircase (waterfall) combines elements of strength and infinity. Use of black rubber/cork for the face of the cabinets (lava) to create visual contrast.

• Steel window sill in front room (guest, yoga, office) creates an additional seating area with magnetic cushions that can be re-arranged as needed. Magnetic hooks holds a curtain in place for privacy when guests occupy the space.

• Inexpensive re-cycled rubber material used for bathroom sinks chosen for its great sustainability.

• Material manufactured from recycled tires and cork is used on kitchen cabinetry and kitchen chairs, creating an elegant kitchen unaffected by normal wear and tear of family life.

• The “disappearing” kitchen chairs are easily stored under island to maximize use of space.

• Upstairs bookshelf functions as railings/barriers between floor plans and evokes the ocean by using blue panelite

• Magnetic chalkboard sliders in the play area and paperboard sliders in the kids' rooms transform the house itself into a medium for children's artistic expression.

• Console behind the master bed echoes kitchen island and dining room table while providing storage for clothing.

• 90% of the furnishings and carpets re-used (bought off Craigslist).

• the tree in front of the house was salvaged from the back rear yard during construction

• Shoe storage drawers beneath coat closet double as a bench for changing shoes

Leone Living[edit]

Picture: Leone Living

3bedroom 3bath, 1812 sqft. House in santa monica California

• Simplistic Eco-conscious design that is focused on functionality and creating a breathing family environment.

• The house is oriented on the site for optimum advantage of natural light and cross ventilation.

• Maximum use of natural light to cut down electrical cost.

• Conscious effort in using only materials in their most organic form.

• No use of chemicals, carpets, tiles or paint.

• Exterior panels contain 30% recycled materials.

• 9’ x 16’ Single hung window, balanced with steel weight, maximizing indoor/outdoor living.

• Floor material connected in an unobtrusive manner to increase floor plan flow and space.

• Design and use of color inspired by dramatic landscape to create contrasting stimulating interior. The red (volcanic) kitchen island creates a multi-functional gathering point in the heart of the house. The rubber staircase combines elements of strength and infinity.

• Windowsill in Living room made of steel creates an additional seating area with magnetic cushions that can be rearranged to ones needs.

• Front skylite to create a natural light in kitchen

• Entry courtyard to create a privacy from busy street.

• Material manufactured from recycled tires is used on kitchen cabinetry and kitchen chairs, creating an elegant kitchen unaffected by normal wear and tear of family life.

• LED Light design in I structural beam in order to make indoor use of structure and create ambiance.

• Bookshelf functions as railings/barriers between floor plans.

• Headboard in master bedroom is cladded with the flooring material to give unobtrusive feel of space

• Outdoor sleeping area for healthy living

Lava Living[edit]

Picture: Lava Living

Reykjavik, Iceland

• 2 bed 2 bath 11th floor penthouse apartment, designed to serve as temporary living for traveling business professionals.

• A comfortable and productive space, to be an extension of occupant’s home and office. Designed for living, working and entertaining.

• Simplistic eco-conscious design that is focused on functionality and creating a breathing living/working environment.

• Conscious effort in using only materials in their most natural, organic form.

• Windows are designed to take full advantage of top story views of surrounding area. Maximum use of natural light to cut down on electrical consumption.

• The Island serves both as a dining area and work surface.

• Island chairs are easily stored under island to maximize usage of space. Chairs rest on ball bearings that make moving effortless.

• Kitchen cabinets float above the floor creating a perceived larger area.

• Kitchen is designed to hide cook top, sink and oven when not needed; allowing it to be utilized as a clutter free work environment.

• Multifunctional bathroom door serves as a barrier closing off the hallway, creating separation between the public and private areas.

• Floor material connected in an unobtrusive manner to increase floor plan flow and space.

• Use of materials and colors inspired by dramatic landscape. The lava in the powder room flows into the living space. The black lava rock in the kitchen and bathroom flows unobtrusively from wall to floor.

• Multifunctional bathtub and sink unit.

MNM mod[edit]

Formerly known as M3 House Assembly process of MNM mod

MNM mod's Building Properties:

         * high performance
         * net-zero energy
         * sustainable
         * affordable
         * efficient
         * mass-customizable
         * modular manufacturing
         * fast assembly
         * modern construction system

• Design of environmentally and economically sensitive structures.

• Building through integrated design; strategies towards global sustainable development.

• Sustainable construction is a social responsibility to reduce the building’s carbon footprint. Selecting green materials, systems, and sustainable technologies.

• High recycled content, with reusable resources.

• Passive and active design principles.

• Easily deconstructed to recycle parts at the end of building life cycle. Zero-waste, diverting all materials from the landfill.

• Energy efficiency of the building’s envelope design is achieved by selecting external wall system and door window package with high ‘‘R’’ and ‘‘U’’ value.

• Thermo mass, reducing the mechanical load, energy use and cost.

• Renewable energies, Solar, Geothermal.

• Developing timeless, durable building methods with long life-span, easy to modify and remodel for the fetcher need.

• Materials with low embodied energy.

• Selecting standard size materials, Lowers manufacture cost, Mass customization, industry needs to adopt new thought process.

• System allows to build from small homes, to housing developments and apartment complexes.

• Construction speed increases thanks to the innovative factory construction system.

• Modular construction system allows to build off-site, manufacturing the building like automotive industry, controlling quality and reducing environmental impact and cost.

"You must be the change, that you wish to see in the world’’ -Gandhi

RUBBiSH (recycled rubber sink)[edit]

Picture: RUBBiSH

• Created with conscious effort in using only materials in their most organic form.

• Basin is made out of inexpensive recycled silicon rubber, which is composed out of rubbish from a wide arrange of rubber products like car tires, giving these products a new life.

• The simplistic Eco-conscious design of these sinks is focused on functionality and the sustainable value of home fixtures.

• The minimal use of materials reduces waste and the sink can be recycled after it completes its life cycle.

• The weight of the sink is under a pound, which makes it very easy to handle and supported.

• The recycled rubber material is very versatile and it can give used in the different shapes and sizes for different sinks.

Awards[edit]

2010[edit]

R+D AWARD: RUBBiSH (recycled rubber sink) [1]

IDA International Design Award : Leone Living [2]

2009[edit]

Europe's 40 under 40 - 2009 Laureates.[3]

Watermark Awards -Project of the year awards -Grand Prize[4] -Special Focus - Lighting[5]

Residential Architect Design Awards[6]

Remodeling Design Awards[7]

Builder's Choice Awards -House Remodeling

2008[edit]

Builder's Choice Awards-Merit Award[8]

The Santa Monica Sustainable Quality Award[9]

Residential Architect Design Awards - Grand Prize: Architectural Interior[10]

Library Hafnarfjords Competition Honorable Mention[11]

2007[edit]

-IIDA 34th Annual Awards: Best of competition 2007[12] -Grand Prize: Residential

Skart Gallery[edit]

In November 2008, Minarc launched Skart Gallery, an avant-garde space established in the art complex of Bergamot Station, in Santa Monica. Skart was developed to investigate the inter connective relationship with architecture and the fine-arts. Skart explores the link between the unique, established Minarc architecture and the contemporary arts from around the world.

Shows[edit]

Start of Skart[edit]

The launching of the art gallery. Featured artwork from Manfred Muller, Johanna Jordan, Mercedes Gertz, Nancy-Louise Jones, Bjarni Sigurbjorsson, Helga Solrun.

Group LA 2008[edit]

A consortium of 30 Los Angeles-based documentary artist-photographers launched "An intimate view of Los Angeles", the first in a series of site-specific digital exhibition installations, under the direction of Helen K. Garber and in collaboration with Minarc/GallerySkart

The artists of GroupLA2008 included: Geoffrey Baris, Larry Brownstein, Rose-Lynn Fisher, Lisa Folino, Helen K. Garber, Shelley A. Gazin, Monica Gazzo, Ken Haber, Robert Hale, David Healey, Mark Indig, Judy Lawne, Nancy-Louise Jones, Donald Loze, Meg Madison, Jim Mc.Hugh, David Meltzer, Ted Meyer, Rosalyn Miles, Tom Paiva, Stuart Rapeport, Leslie Rosenthal, Hamesh Shahani, Kiet Thai, Rae Threat and Lillian Elaine Wilson.

Nordic Mood[edit]

Nordic Mood was a photography show curated by Minarc/GallerySkart with prints of Icelandic photographer Fridgeir Helgason.

GroupSC2009[edit]

A consortium of 50 regional documentary artist-photographers, directed by Helen K. Garber. Showcase of "An intimate view of southern California" was at MOPLA's opening reception at Bergamot Station as a featured installation. The exhibit travelled to Skart Gallery for a series of screenings. Artist-Photographers exhibited their work at Skart Gallery.

Notes[edit]

References[edit]