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Cubiculum Golden Prize 15,000€

Cubiculum is a timeless, sensual and intimate haven for natural rest for a new generation of workers, travellers and dwellers. It gives a deep sense of beauty and harmony, inspired by the Roman domus. Natural materials and a technology-free environment are essential for the experience of a peaceful haven.

The Jury comments

”The concept has a holistic viewpoint and a nice feel, it is an interesting topic to develop a space inside a space. The proposal ia as a ‘beautiful’ design with considered materials and details. Altogether, the idea of a ‘safe space’ which brings privacy and rest, is current.”

Kristiina Kuusiluoma and Martino De Rossi

Kristiina Kuusiluoma and Martino De Rossi are founding partners of Collaboratorio, a Finnish-Italian architecture studio based in Helsinki. Since 2016, they have been working on various projects, spanning from renovations and interiors to spatial concepts of early education. They are strongly inspired by layers of history as well as the human condition, the evolution of which is slow in comparison to the fast-paced technology of today. Their dream is to develop flexible, mixed co-living spaces in the contemporary urban context.

Key Insights

Right now we seek new opportunities and adventures with an even more versatile, movable and technology-enhanced lifestyle. On the other hand, we also feel rootless and astray, and we seek human contact and a sense of belonging. At the same time, we need to realize that we already live in a shared place: the earth. We have to start sharing our homes as well in a new way, considering also issues of ageing, alienation and rootlessness.

New forms of co-living, co-working and co-creation serve these needs, both from a practical point of view (reducing costs, less ownership, less maintenance) and from the social point of view (a sense of community and belonging). These social spaces, whether for working or living, are often vibrant and lively, offering the pulse that we seek. At the same time, we are yearning for a break and privacy.

This paradox, the need to balance social vibrancy and our individual peace, is at the very core of our concept of “Cubiculum”. To be in the world means being connected to the places in which we find ourselves.

A new generation of worker-travellers, designers, artists and adventurers are transplanting themselves in new cities across the globe, while following the next project, idea or opportunity. This lifestyle is also connected to an idea (or even an ideal) of challenging ownership through the sharing economy and social connections: co-living and co-working. Cubiculum is meant for progressive offices/operators who are willing to invest on the well-being of their employees and/or users. They recognise the meaning of natural rest also during the day, or people’s need to withdraw.

Cubiculum offers the opportunity for natural rest and a deep sense of beauty and harmony. Natural, absorbent and breathable materials and a technology-free environment are essential for the experience of a peaceful haven – one that people have known for centuries. Measures, proportions and geometry – all related to the human body – come from the ancient Roman bedroom.

Cubiculum can be used in the daytime or nighttime, but its only purpose is rest. It is a place where you do not have to be efficient. It can be used for thinking, meditating, reading and writing down your thoughts. It is a non-doing place.

The place where you decide to locate your Cubiculum does not depend on a window. Ideally, a Cubiculum would be situated so that from it, you can see outside the building. All four sides consist of vertically sliding panels, which slide with the help of a counterweight. You can mechanically vary the positions of the panels and the Venetian blinds in the roof.

The cubiculum does not have electricity. As a reading lamp you can use a portable, rechargeable led lantern, reinterpreting the Roman clay oil lamp, which you can even keep beside you in bed.


In co-operation with:

Ola Kukkasniemi, Wooden Oy: cabinet maker, wood structure

Jyrki Eklund Tuusulan Paja: blacksmith, counterweight system

Paul Lynch, Natural Building Company Oy: sliding clay panels


Special thanks:

Milla Kokko: concept development

Lausa Nissin, Ph.D: Roman sleep research

Pälvi Rantala, Outi Rantala, Tarja Salmela, University of Lapland: sleep research

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