Bright & Carefree Living in Experimental Architecture by Melanie Klusmeier | 8th December, 2013 | Prime Properties
His work enthrals, surprises and impresses. Gábor Városi is an artist and architect with talent and passion in equal measure. In Budapest’s most exclusive district of Svábhegy, he has created an experimental masterpiece with two freehold apartments.
Gábor Városi in fact started out studying Painting, Sculpture & Photography. Nowadays he is, first and foremost, an architect of passion and by profession – but nevertheless he remains a true artist at heart. He just loves unconventional design, the play of forms and colours. After his galvanising student days at the Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest, this Hungarian gentleman went on to acquire a teacher’s diploma in line with his Master’s degree in Arts, Aesthetics and Art History. “Ever since my childhood I have been thrilled both by buildings and works of art as a composition,” he says, as the father of a little daughter. It is the connection between architecture and art above all else that has fascinated him from such a young age and marks his signature architectural style to this day. He sees buildings as sculptures and often works as his own client – something that is certainly in his own interests. “I build my houses usually as my own investment, meaning I am working for myself and have total freedom to implement all of my seemingly absurd ideas without any intervention from anyone else,” says Városi, smiling.
“Ever since my childhood I have been thrilled by composition in different genres – like in buildings and works of art.” Gábor Városi
The artist has devoted his sole attention to residential houses, since they provide the greatest creative scope for imagination to build in. Gábor Városi values his artist’s lifestyle a great deal, and it is just as unconventional as his architectural output: “A creative day for me never begins too early – you cannot be creative and have good ideas with deep wrinkles from a lack of sleep,” Városi laughs. “A cappuccino is always part of the best way to start the day, along with a little sport later on in the morning.” He likes to bring his new ideas into focus while running or meditating. Escaping the city and heading for the peace and tranquillity of the countryside is also a favourite way for the artist to find space for his thoughts. Good food, sufficient rest and physical well-being are not neglected in the Városi household.
“As Hungary witnessed a change of regime and an opening of borders into Europe, a huge wave of euphoria swept across the country,” the architect recalls. One downside of this however was that it left behind a badly neglected architectural scene that needed to be given the kiss of life with some renewed dynamism and creativity. In the midst of generating these fresh thoughts and ideas to shake up the sleepy market, Városi began creating sculptural houses and expressing himself through his artistic, architectural and art historical sensibilities. Today he proudly unveils one of his latest projects: this futuristic architectural specimen is the truly spectacular residential complex “Art Home”, which accommodates two exclusive freehold apartments. It is located in Svábhegy, an upmarket district just 10 minutes’ drive from the centre of Budapest. “It is always paramount for me to free my mind completely during the conception of a design. At the beginning of a project, I also urge my colleagues to forget any restrictive parameters and instead to think and draw big. Something so big that they didn’t even dare to draw it at university. The concept has to grow wings and take flight – then we can always clear back from there and decide how best to proceed.” The aim when devising the special aura of this building was to create a striking counter-pole to the popular and often overplayed style of minimalism. Surrounded by a vast nature reserve, the structure of the building adheres to a form that provides an easy continuum for organic shapes whilst statically supporting the large terraces. The construction of the façade, reminiscent of a spider’s web, appears both to envelope and protect the corpus of the house, which is made almost entirely of glass and thus flooded with daylight. It looks almost as though an incredible, giant sculpture has landed in the lush countryside. Two exclusive freehold apartments occupy the ground and first floor of the house respectively, and can be reached here via a fully glazed, virtually silent elevator.
“My designs are free from all kinds of restrictions with the aim of creating visual joy and maximum functionality.” Gábor Városi
Here the ground floor apartment for sale spans approximately 240 sqm in total, affording lightflooded interiors including two bathrooms, three bedrooms and a large living and dining area of some 74 sqm, which flows seamlessly onto the expansive southeast-facing terrace (approx. 75 sqm). From every room in this exclusive architectural masterpiece, sensational views can be enjoyed over the lush-green undulating countryside of the Buda Hills looking out towards the highlands. The spatial combination of bedroom and bathroom is another incredible highlight of this home. Unconventional architectural design incorporates glass surfaces along three elevations of the space, creating the sensation for the owner of being right in the garden. “The generation of visual joy, combined with the highest possible functionality – that was my overarching aim here,” says Városi. “My developments are always adventures in form! As well as aspiring to design excellence in an aesthetic sense, the house is also fitted with technology that is state of the art, with other amenities for uncompromised comfort like underfloor heating and air-conditioning.”
The future owner can also look forward to three parking spaces in the underground garage. A Japanese garden with a heated outdoor swimming pool for exclusive usage rounds off this dream home, along with splendid views overlooking the romantic city of Budapest. Gábor Városi lives the carefree life of an artist, spiced up with the smaller hedonist privileges of a thoroughly successful architect. “My love and I wander around the world with open eyes. I absorb all the exciting, new and outrageous ideas and initiatives, and try to reinterpret much of this in the form of my work. But at the end of the day it is my sweet little daughter Villö who is my absolute first priority.”