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Monday, April 22, 2024

Kagay-anon Architect featured in BluPrint’s Architecture of Silence

By Mike Baños

Kagay-anon Architect Edwin D. Uy is one of the Philippines innovative architects whose project – House No. 26 is featured in a compilation of 18 diverse and purposeful dwellings from around the Philippines in BluPrint Magazine’s latest coffee table book The Architecture of Silence. 

Ar. Edwin Dychauco Uy

Capturing the essence of silence and serenity within architectural marvels, the publishers describe Architecture of Silence as an ode to the profound impact of space on human experience. 

“Each project  embodies a unique narrative, blending cultural influences with contemporary design principles to create environments that speak volumes through their tranquility. Each home encapsulates the modern principles of tropical homes centered on calmness and tranquility, presenting an unparalleled collection of spaces that evoke calm, rest, and inspiration.”

“Thank you Geewel Fuster and the entire BluPrint team for the feature of House No. 26 as one of the 18 houses in the Philippines in their latest book entitled the Architecture of Silence,” posted Ar. Uy in his social media page. “I’m also very grateful to see House No. 26 on the paper cover of the book! The left side along the spine too shows the woven screen, the steps and the fence.”

BluPrint Editor-in-chief Ar. Geewel Fuster (Photographed by Ed Simon)

Describing the book’s curated contents as “a silent revolution in design”, the publishers endeavors to take the reader on “a journey through singular spaces that tell the narrative of tranquility and creativity, and explore these sanctuaries of peace designed by the Philippines’ finest architects and interior designers.”

“House No. 26 is a project of mine that will forever remain special as it is one of the first houses where I was able to employ a large entity of craft involved in the design,” Ar. Uy relates. “This was also due to the existing terrain of the property that forced us to build the living areas one floor above. The slope of the lot abruptly goes up from the road access level. Since I always respect the existing topography of the site, I brought up the entire house leaving a space below for the carport (for ease of access from the road).” 

Taking his cue from one of Philippine Architecture’s iconic Bahay na bato (also known in Cebuano as balay na bato or balay nga bato),  Ar. Uy chose to make one of its traditional features as the focal point of his innovative design.

“This approach led me to think about the traditional Bahay-na-Bato where the circulatory spaces, specifically the main stairs, are located outside of the house. One can see these stairs exposed either in front of the house or on one side. The respect towards our culture somehow led me to create this point of entry,” he recalls.

House No. 26

In seeking the attributes of calmness and tranquility to make it a restful haven, Ar. Uy combined modern design principles with traditional materials.

“To provide more privacy these days, the external main entry stairs are partially covered for weather protection using woven Viro fibers that are very good alternatives to rattan. This is a very environmentally friendly material that can last a really long time. The screen covering is in two layers which were woven on site by two craftsmen from Cebu,” he noted.

The architectural woven skin allows some privacy and protection from the sun to the main steps leading to the porch, and yet doesn’t close it off from the surrounding landscape. 

“The craftsmanship shown in this house is amazing. Through these concepts, the form of the house slowly came to be as what it is now. Layered blocks gently rise with a play of materials that divide the spaces according to its functions.”

A licensed architect, an entrepreneur, and a creative journalist, Ar. Geewel Cabungcal–Fuster is the Editor-in-Chief of the Philippine’s definitive authority in architecture and design, BluPrint magazine. To date, she is the youngest Editor-in-Chief at BluPrint.BluPrint’s The Architecture of Silence is available online via the @sarisari_shopping website, Shopee, and Lazada. It is also available at the SariSari pop-up store in Estancia Mall, Eastwood Mall, Festival Mall, and major National Bookstores.


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