Strata Villa is a modern expression of the traditional siheyuan 四合院—a style of Chinese architecture commonly used in places of residence. It was designed to bring the old and new together, from the original structure and extension of the house, to the multi-generational family that calls it home. To document both the architecture and philosophy that form the foundations of Strata Villa, BLACK was tasked to design a publication that detailed the transformation of the house and personal anecdotes from homeowner Mr Lim.
The publication was intended to be a book of legacy that would be passed through the generations, as well as a gift to be distributed to friends. To ensure that it would be able to withstand wear and tear, we looked to traditional Chinese methods of book binding and presentation, which had helped to preserve old journals for centuries.
This informed the use of a book case, which makes for easy gifting and packages the publication as a treasured object. The Strata Villa logo is applied as a pattern that wraps around the case—a nod towards the motifs found on the cloth covers of classic Chinese journals. Inside, the book is bound using the exposed thread sewn method to express rawness and craftsmanship.
The design of the book was inspired by Strata Villa’s architectural form and interior palette. While the book cover symbolises the new extension of the house, the book case represents the compound’s existing colonial structure. A condensed serif font was selected for optimum legibility, while mirroring the long and narrow side elevation of the house.
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