Mirror image: Casa Invisibile launches Delugan Meissl’s prefab concept

cost-effective 45sqm pre-fabricated timber house
Conceived by Delugan Meissl Associated Architects, Casa Invisibile is a cost-effective 45sqm pre-fabricated timber house with a low impact approach to design
(Image credit: press)

Casa Invisibile is a cost-efficient housing concept by Vienna-based Delugan Meissl Associated Architects, which offers a resolution to the age-old predicament around the relationship between a building and its context by proposing a design 'for turnkey implementation at any designated site'.

'Invisibility', in this design, is achieved through two key approaches: On one hand, the scheme leaves a minimal footprint, due to its lightweight nature and ability to function as a mobile home (reducing planning restrictions). At the same time, mirrored cladding helps the structure seamlessly blend into the scenery.

Build in standardised 14.5 x 3.5 x 3.1m prefabricated modules (45sqm) - for exact fit onto the back of a lorry - there are currently two prototypes in existence, both situated in rural Slovenia. Mass production is a key future aim for the firm. The lightweight structures are easy to assemble and relocate; DMAA suggest the house could be raised on stilts, propped up on steep hillsides, or simply sat upon flat ground. The basic model can be added to, in order to extend the living space within, generating a bespoke personalised space.

The build is simple. An Alucobond (aluminium sandwich panels) façade is fitted onto a basic insulated wooden shell. Whilst the mirror-finish promotes 'invisibility', a choice of different coloured panels is also available. The interior pinewood finish comes in a range of possible tones, whilst various options for internal fittings and external additions - such as fireplaces and terraces - ensure each home is tailored to the homeowner's needs.

The interior is divided into three zones; sleeping quarters lie at one end, separated from the living room by an optional fireplace; living space occupies the middle zone, with two wide sliding doors allowing plenty of sunlight in; a utility space is sectioned off at the other end of the house, with doors leading into a bathroom and storage, the only closed off areas in an otherwise open, flexible floorplan.

The layout of Casa Invisibile was designed to be fundamentally practical - offering just the right amount of space to accommodate the activities inside - while the smooth continuous timber surfaces and minimal interior decor contribute equally to the house's simple, yet texturally rich aesthetic.

ow-profile reflective form comes at a relatively low cost of construction

The humble, elegant simplicity of the low-profile reflective form comes at a relatively low cost of construction (the protypes cost 120,000 euros each with internal furnishings). With views towards mass production, the concept is currently undergoing live testing

(Image credit: press)

Casa Invisibile exterior view

Casa Invisibile in an architectural proposal that tackles the issue of harmonising a building with its landscape and enabling the same unit to function in multiple scenarios

(Image credit: press)

its mirrored, reflective facade helps it blend in the landscape

The scheme's 'invisibilty' manifesto is twofold; its mirrored, reflective facade helps it blend in the landscape, while its mobile and lightweight nature means it has a minimal footprint

(Image credit: press)

Two prototypes tested in Slovenian countryside

Two prototypes are currently being tested and occupied by members of the DMAA office, both built in the beautiful Slovenian countryside. The concept however would enable relocation to any desired site - be it rural or urban

(Image credit: press)

Bedroom interior

Inside, the material finishes are just as uniform as the fully mirrored exterior, with soft pinewood on centre stage

(Image credit: press)

Dining area

Views out are concentrated to the large full height sliding patio doors in the main living space

(Image credit: press)

main living space

Whilst the basic module is a pre-determined standardised form, the owner can form a bespoke home by selecting from a range of optional interior fixtures and tones of pinewood 

(Image credit: press)

fireplace and lounge

An optional fireplace creates a visual accent within the near-seamless timber interior, whilst dividing sleeping quarters from the open-plan living space 

(Image credit: press)

Sliding doors onto patio area

Buyers can opt for a version with additional living space, such as a decked terrace

(Image credit: press)