It is a small villa in the forest of Nagano Pref. located center of Japan.
A client’s request that “architecture that is unusual, beautiful, and does not make you feel old in time” and strict condition of the retreat line by the landscape regulation and the building volume ratio of 20% of 290M2 site were design requirements.

Project name:  Shell House- The language of forest-
Company name:  Tono Mirai architects
Contact e-mail:
Project location: Nagano Japan
Completion Year: 2018
Other participants:
Photo credits:  takeshi noguchi
Youtube / Vimeo links:

Shell House By Tono Mirai architects - Sheet2Following that, close the north / west side that lots of passengers, a waterway flows, and a large opening to take in sunlight and heat. Think about the organic shape of “totally blend into the surrounding forest” which it has on the east and south side. To be a model of house less environmental impact, with local FSC wood, earth and people’s hands without petrochemical materials.

Shell House By Tono Mirai architects - Sheet3All the interior rooms are finished with local earth and wood. The earth wall of the curved surface gently stretches across the whole. When drawing in the southeast wooden fittings, it becomes integrated with the forest through the wood deck.
On the first floor, change with a stepped up, with sanitary and restroom in the back of continuous wooden doors.

Shell House By Tono Mirai architects - Sheet5This house is designed according to passive design. Outside wall, roof and ceiling average heat transmission coefficient UA = 0.49. (W/m2K), Japanese environmental assessment CASBEE S ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ and satisfying the primary energy consumption standards in Japan reduction of 11%. The earth wall is combined with 180 mm wool insulation U = 0.207 (W/m 2 K).

Shell House By Tono Mirai architects - Sheet7

Seven beams born from the organic earth wall are expressed the cycle of life of the human and universe. And the two inscribed circles represent the correspondence of them.

It is the architecture talk to human born from and return to Earth.

Tono Mirai

Tono Mirai is an architect who creates contemporary architecture by using traditional material ‘earth’.His characteristic organic form is made from the flowing spirits in the space that give the human’s relief and energy. He gets many prizes in Japan and internationally.

Started making clay and Earth architecture after coming across the material of comfort and freedom of design and environment at his own nest house construction in Tokyo.It changed his architectural way from modern to ecological and sustainable down to earth. Studied earth architecture participated in many workshops and lectures and started earth project in Japan and abroad by using local clay and wood and local people.Now aiming at contributing to society by the possibility of Earth house of the future all over the world.

1986  Graduated from Waseda University Department of architecture in Tokyo. BA.

1988  Completion of the Master course of Waseda UniversityDepartment of architecture in Tokyo.MA.

1988-1992  Worked at an architect’s studio.

1995 Established Tono Mirai architects

2008~2018  lecturer at Maebashi Institute of Technology dept. of architecture.

Tono Mirai architects   Tono Mirai
961-27 Oiwake karuizawa-machi kitasakugun
Nagano pref. 389-0115 Japan

TEL +81-267-31-6264
FAX +81-267-31-6265




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