You might think you’re not high maintenance, but how much room would you need to feel comfortable in a living space? For Italy’s foremost living architect Renzo Piano, the answer is simple: 6 square meters or 80 square feet. That’s the size of Diogene, his new cabin built on the campus of German design firm Vitra.
While Renzo Piano is responsible for London’s Shard, the European Union’s tallest building, his new project, Diogene, is a micro-house that resembles more of a luxury trailer thanks to its aluminum paneling. If you compare Diogene to a cavern, a hut or a box, you’re not far off since its inspiration comes from the classical Greek philosopher Diogenes, who is said to have renounced his worldly possessions in order to live in a barrel.
No matter what it may look like, Renzo Piano’s Diogene is much more than a simple container thanks to technology which makes the dwelling largely self-sufficient, such as photovoltaic cells, solar panels and a rainwater tank. A wood interior gives the cabin warmth while a pull-out sofa and table offer flexible furnishings. The eco-friendly modern minimalist dwelling might be inspired by a barrel, but we’re betting the three models Vitra will be offering in the future will cost a lot more.