The primary goal of the project best kinds of a floor design of the space, which is a celebration of both light and shadow,” describes Maxim Kashin, who founded his own architecture firm in 2013, about a recently completed renovation of the townhouse located in Moscow. The design needed to be functional for a young family of two. This was a challenge due to the L-shaped living and dining spaces.
Maxim was initially attracted by the futuristic, all-white designs of Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, so he employed sculptural, asymmetrical forms, such as two curved multilevel sofas in the living space and a sculpturally angled kitchen island to break down and counteract the space’s traditional rectilinear design.
Maxim states that space’s curved walls act as dividers and shelves that are open, creating intriguing visual effects of shadow and light. Our most-loved, most-loved with-it-element? It’s the striking, large-scale take on traditional terrazzo that was used for the kitchen backsplash and floors.
The floors and backsplash are created with what Maxim calls the “breccia technique made of marble pieces”–a material that’s got the aesthetic appeal of terrazzo, a classic and trendy material, the durability of natural breccia (a kind of rock in which broken pieces are joined together) and the craftsmanship of hand-laid flagstone paving.
While terrazzo typically uses small chips of marble, quartz, or any other stone that is which are held together using a binder, Maxim instead decided to take a bold step: He used larger, more graphic pieces of light-colored marble that have hints of red and gray veining inlaid in a sea of gray grout or aggregate to achieve a uniform, smooth surface. Maxim claims that the abstract pattern it creates is like landscapes but with a futuristic twist. It’s the main centerpiece of the minimalist and neutral tones. Maxim states that the floor was by far the most difficult aspect of the design, however, the floor is sustainable in its reuse of materials that are already in use and durable–an important feature in a space that is frequently used for a busy family. To build the floor as well as the backsplash the marble pieces had to be individually laid out in a way that it was at a suitable distance from adjacent pieces while still considering the layout and the undulating curvatures of the sofas which are typically enclosed by a softer and cloth-covered space.
What makes terrazzo so appealing? The first thing is that we appreciate how strikingly beautiful the breccia technique looks: