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Freebooter consists of two apartments situated in the centre of Amsterdam’s Zeeburgereiland with the eyeline to the Ij River. Sensitive to Dutch history, customs and culture, the project took as its starting point the Netherlands’ maritime past, becoming a modern-day ‘ship on land’, with many references to the wind, water and sail.
The main materials of the build, like a ship’s hull, were limited to wood, steel and glass. The floor plan to each apartment, referencing a ship’s layout, is organic and free-flowing, with step-inclines to spaces that are designed to envelop and loosen as the inhabitant moves through it.
GG-loop sought to bring the spirit of Freebooter to the apartments by assembling a highly skilled team of craftsmen and carpenters to help realise the vision. One of the most important features is the use of light.
A year-round study of light conditions generates the optimal shape and positioning of the louvres, enabling maximum distribution of light whilst allowing for an appropriate level of privacy.
Scientists and philosophers started calling this era – Anthropocene – and artists are talking about planetary burn-out. As an answer to this condition, in the last decades, the desire to connect with nature has been manifested in architecture through the integration of green systems in outdoor and indoor environments.
Being in direct contact with nature has proven to improve physical and mental health, as well as overall wellbeing. When designing and thinking about projects ranging from objects to the urban scale, GG-loop uses a direct approach of biophilic design to further this thought taking into account the importance of connection to nature, ourselves and other living systems at large.
Biophilia means ‘love for life’ and the studio believes that design is not only about creating functional objects and spaces, but also should tell a story, taking its user on an experimental journey and serving as a user’s extension.
Freebooter is an expression of GG-loop‘s biophilic design approach: the notion that the built environment should not only be green in terms of materials, construction techniques and energy efficiency features, as it also should be harmonious ecosystems of healthy and productive spaces to help the users reconnect to nature and in which wellbeing is fostered.
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