If you are a fan of the Cynic tradition of living the simple life, which was famously taken up by Thoreau, whose advice “Simplify, simplify,” became the emblem of his time spent living the simple life at Walden Pond, then making the most out of a studio apartment is simple, easy, and natural. If, however, you are into gizmos, and you have the money, you can convert your 420 square foot unit into a transformer, with as many extraneous gizmos crammed in as the cartoon Inspector Gadget.
That is what Graham Hill has done. The entrepreneur who founded Treehugger.com, before selling it of $10 million to Discovery Communications, and after selling his other website for another $10 million, set up a contest for architects to design his apartment. Out of over 300 entries, Catalin Sandu, a Romanian architect, impressed him with the transformer-style apartment featured in the video.
The simple living space is equipped with sliding bookshelf, unfolding beds, and the capacity to sit dinner for 12. It is six rooms in one.
Living in a city like New York would inspire this maximal living space that imitates the “intuitive smart devices” such as iPads that try to cram every manner of gadget into a single hand hold console.
In this set up, the living room and office convert into the bedroom by pulling down the bookshelf.
“Graham is a rare breed, a pragmatic idealist,” said his friend Nick Denton, who founded Gawker media. “He’s shied away from tokenism and from empty idealism. I think it’s kind of cool for Graham to come up with a sustainable way of living in cities instead of showing million-dollar solar panels on houses in Napa Valley, which is not the way most people live.”
Sustainable maybe, but only for yuppies. The rest will have to live in New York as they always have — with less gizmos and more practicality.