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Architecture that Thinks through Form: Formative architects: Hwadamjae

Formative architects

written by
Koh Youngsung, Lee Sungbeom
photographed by
Formative architects
materials provided by
Formative architects
edited by
Bang Yukyung

SPACE February 2024 (No. 675)




A Doublesided Space

The fan-shaped site facing the northeasterly Wangbaesan Mountain belongs to a detached housing district developed with Dongtan-2 New Town Development Project. Though it is in the dense housing complex, it has a pleasant and elegant atmosphere thanks to a hill behind it and its small neighbourhood which makes it quite different from other development sites subject to restrictions. The façade of Hwadamjae facing the neighbourhood street has a neutral and calm appearance, but the curved surface of the exterior wall from ground level to roofline dramatically contrast with the solid façade of broken bricks, creating a unique sense of proportion. The southern elevations of the first and second floors curve gently along the site boundary, casting shadows of varying depths with the change of sun’s angle. To promote harmony with its surroundings, some sections of the building massing have been lowered so that the hill to the rear of the building can be seen from the street at the front. Instead of placing a garden on the south side facing the road like the neighbouring houses, the house is L-shaped with the backyard on the north side, blocking the view from neighbouring buildings and the road, while also being free from the noise of the road and the neighbourhood park. 





The client didn’t mind a north-facing house, as someone who prioritised privacy in their home. The backyard and pocket garden are enough to keep the interior bright, and the backside of the building’s axis, which opens to nature in contrast to the heavy façade toward the road, becomes an attractive element to the house. A pivoting hinged door at the boundary between the backyard and the forest can open to present a new view of the yard connected to nature. The client wanted private rooms for the family, so the L-shaped floor plan has private rooms at each end, with public spaces such as living room on the first floor, study and outdoor deck on the second floor at the connection point in the middle. All indoor spaces are curved to face the backyard, creating an organic relationship between the indoor spaces and the yard.




You can see more information on the SPACE No. February (2024).


Formative architects (Koh Youngsung, Lee Sungbeom

Design team

Cho Hyeshin


Sancheok-dong, Hwaseong-si, Gyeonggi-do, Korea


single house

Site area


Building area


Gross floor area


Building scope






Building to land ratio


Floor area ratio




Exterior finishing

aluminum zinc, reclaimed brick, Sto Signature, St

Interior finishing

water paint

Structural engineer

Dream Structure (Kim Minkwan)

Mechanical and electrical engineer



owner operated construction

Design period

May 2020 – May 2021

Construction period

Nov. 2021 – Jan. 2023

Landscape architect

Forest Yeonil (Ahn Junghee)

Koh Youngsung
Koh Youngsung graduated from the graduate school of architecture, Hanyang University, worked for Solto architecture, and then established the design lab, EXA. In 2013, after changing the office name to Formative architects, many emotional, experimental projects developed. He aims to create architectural projects that pay attention to the sincerity of an essence rather than the surfaces of a space.
Lee Sungbeom
Lee Sungbeom graduated from the graduate school of architecture, Hanyang University and worked for SPACE GROUP. He searches the value of architecture in everyday life based on its publicness and explores various architectural values through his interpretation of the nature of architecture.