The Intersection of Interior and Exterior Architecture.

Project Puma Photographer Credit: Patrick Williamson

In the expansive realm of architecture, two pivotal yet intertwined disciplines dictate the contours of our built environment: interior architecture and exterior architecture. Drawing from a wealth of architectural expertise, Elicyon’s own Charu Gandhi, a qualified Architect registered with RIBA and ARB, navigates the intricate balance between these disciplines to shape spaces that seamlessly blend functionality, aesthetics, and human experience.

In August 2023, The OWO Residences by Raffles unveiled a fully completed residence, designed by Elicyon, within the Grade II listed Old War Office building in London. This project reimagines an elegant three-bedroom residence, blending contemporary English home design with subtle nods to the Far East.

Inspired by the building's rich heritage, Elicyon used botanical prints and unique decorative elements, honouring its wartime legacy. The blend of vintage and contemporary elements creates a captivating space that pays homage to the building's grand Edwardian architecture while offering a modern twist.

Interior Architecture: Crafting Functional and Aesthetic Interiors

Interior architecture, an art form of designing and optimising interior spaces within built structures, encompasses spatial layout, circulation, material selection, and furnishing choices. Elicyon orchestrates interiors, maximising functionality while elevating overall aesthetic appeal.

One notable disparity between interior and exterior architecture lies in their focal points. Exterior architecture focuses on the form, structure, and external appearance of a building, while interior architecture zooms in on interior spaces, ensuring they are well-designed, ergonomic, and tailored to occupants' needs.

Interior architects focus on human scale, proportion, and ergonomics to create spaces that are not only comfortable but also intuitive to navigate. The design team considers factors like lighting, acoustics, and ventilation to enhance the quality of the interior environment.

Project Puma Photographer Credit: Patrick Williamson

Exterior Architecture: Sculpting the Built Environment

Conversely, exterior architecture focuses on designing and constructing a building's external shell, integrating it within the surrounding landscape or urban context. Elicyon crafts structures that are visually striking, structurally robust, and responsive to their environment.

While interior architecture delves into the minutiae of interior spaces, exterior architecture adopts a broader perspective, considering how buildings interact with surroundings on a macro scale. This encompasses site orientation, building massing, facade design, and landscaping.

Exterior architects often collaborate with urban planners, landscape architects, and other professionals to ensure buildings harmonise with their surroundings and contribute positively to the urban fabric. They may incorporate sustainable design principles and green building technologies to minimise environmental impact and enhance energy efficiency.

Old War Office, London⁠ by tupungato from Getty Images

Old War Office Building in London⁠ by Leonid Andronov

The Symbiotic Relationship Between Interior and Exterior Architecture

Though distinct, interior and exterior architecture deeply intertwine, with each influencing the other in profound ways. The success of a building hinges on the seamless integration of its interior and exterior elements, creating a unified whole that transcends individual components.

Interior architects collaborate closely with their exterior counterparts to ensure interior spaces align with the overarching design vision and functional requirements of the building. Likewise, exterior architects consider the interior user experience when shaping the external envelope of a building, strategically positioning windows, sculpting building forms, and selecting materials that complement the interior design aesthetic.

Project Puma Photographer Credit: Patrick Williamson

In essence, interior and exterior architecture are complementary forces, working in harmony to shape our built environment. By understanding their nuanced differences and embracing their collaborative nature, architects can create spaces that are not only visually captivating but also functionally efficient and emotionally resonant, enriching the lives of those who inhabit them.

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