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Project: NYC Soho Apartment Renovation

Location: Manhattan, New York, USA

Size: 320 m2

Status: Built

Partners: Juan Ignacio Ramos & Ignacio Ramos

Built in 1906, the six-storey building served as the Italian Consulate and the Italian Savings Bank. In the 1930s, the brick and wood structure was reinforced with metal beams and transformed into a building for small industries. In the 1970s, it was again transformed into an artist coop, live-work spaces for certified artists. This particular unit was the studio of the Uruguayan artist Julio Alpuy, who lived and worked there until his death in 2009. The project consisted in converting the space, which included a wood shop and occupied the entire floor, into two units: a one-bedroom and a two-bedroom apartment.

We found the loft in a very precarious condition, with unlevel floors and ceilings. Aesthetically, the place was chaotic. The strategy was to achieve visual order and harmony designing continuous and steady lines in a consistent way throughout the spaces.

The use of drapes was very important to soften the rigidness of the rooms. An interesting balance was generated between the straight and pure lines of the architecture and the irregular pleats of the curtains. The recessed niche on the perimeter of the dropped ceilings creates the feeling of a floating surface and hides light strips and curtain tracks.

Special attention was given to the study of the lighting, always hiding the source and making it bounce against the texture of the drapes and the warm color of the wood.

A palette of earthy tones and textures gives the modern space a warm and pleasant atmosphere.

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