"- And He Built a Crooked House -"
Emily Dickinson said it perfectly: "Where thou art, that is home." But some very creative people, have taken that idea to wonderful extremes by building homes that aren't just places to hang their hats but instead are wildly whimsical, fantastically fanciful, amazingly awesome, and occasionally brilliantly bizarre.
Tilted & Flipped!
As any artist knows, inspiration can come from anywhere and a few these unique builders and architects have been inspired by some very... tilted ideas. Take, for example, Daniel Czapiewski's home in the Polish town of Szymbark. No, you don’t need to turn your monitor upside down: Daniel's home is, indeed, topsy-turvy:
(images via 1, 2)
But Daniel is not the only builder with a unique perspective. In the German town of Trassenheide there's another home with a stand-on-your-head view:
This furniture does not seem to be very functional -
(images via 1)
Are we detecting a theme here? Billed as an "Amusement Park For The Mind," WonderWorks have flipped models of the White House, adding a new dimension to the currently weird political landscape, at various locations around the country:
(images credit: WonderWorks Pigeon Forge)
Similarly spectacular is the "House of Katmandu" in Spain:
In Japan, the flipside of inverted architecture is not a house but a restaurant. Just don't order the soup:
Here is an upside down house in Luna Park in Kouvola, Finland:
In Sabah, Borneo, even the car is hanging upside down:
... Another one is in Repino, Russia (but it does not seem to be finished), shown on the left, and another one also in Russia, close to St. Petersburg (right):
A "crazy House" in Getorff, Germany:
(images credit: Sven Herrmann)
On the left is the upside down house in Polyanitsa, Ukraine - and on the right is the one in Paju, South Korea:
In Ganghwa Island, South Korea (right image), and a cafe in Ukraine (left image):
(image credit: Juliane Eirich)
In Tertens, Austria, this upside down house looks like it was dropped by a tornado:
"Headfirst House" in Putbus, Germany (left image) and another one in Alanya, Turkey (right):
(images via 1, 2)
Flowing & Psychedelic
Other architects have rejected the harsh lines of standard geometry for a more organic, fluid, floating design. These homes were built to look like they'd been poured rather than framed and hammered -- and a few even appear to have been taken out of the oven a tad too early.
Again in Poland, this liquid building looks like it might begin to flow down the street any second.
(image credit: Tomek.pl)
On a side note, when you talk about weird houses you have to tip the derby to Robert A. Heinlein's classic story, "- And He Built a Crooked House -", where a particularly-shaped residence in Los Angeles gets shaken up in an earthquake – and twists itself into a whole new dimension.
Much more down to earth, if you travel to Darmstadt, German you'll see a marvelous structure called Waldspirale (Forest Spiral): a sinuous apartment complex full of biologically-inspired details:
(images credit: Scott R. Maurer, Joachim S. Mueller, Moritz Kloft, Bockstark Knits)
In Vietnam, the aptly named Crazy House (or, to be more polite, the Hang Nga guesthouse) is a wildvine creation full of natural curves and forms (complete with a giraffe):
(images credit: Tom Ravenscroft)
If you really like flowing shapes and melted-look architecture, then check out highly psychedelic creations of Antoni Gaudi - see our popular article for examples.
Then you have the creators who have followed the maxim of "waste-not, want-not" to rather unique ways: taking an abandoned building that was originally one thing and making it into their very own:
Got an abandoned grain silo? Then do what this inventive person did in Argentina, and simply move in:
(right image: Nautilus House, Mexico, via)
Or you can do take this approach to lost and found, this time in Utah ("Monte-Silo House", designed by Gigaplex Architects):
But if you really want to stretch your wings, and happen to get hold of a grounded jet, try your hand at creating a high-flying structure like this hotel in Costa Rica:
(images credit: Costa Verde)
See a lot more of "Airplane Houses" in our popular article Jet-Obsessed.
Then you have the people who live in a shoe, or a basket, or all kinds of other oddities. Take, for example, these delightful footwear homes... This one is in South Africa (left), and this shoe home is in Pennsylvania (right):
(images via 1, 2)
But if shoes aren't your thing, try living in this Scottish pineapple -- a folly built in the 1700s:
(images credit: Louise Bellin Photography)
Or, if fruit isn't your thing, just try working in this 'basket-case' of a structure in Newark, Ohio: the Longaberger Building -
(image credit: Adriana Hangai)
"Each basket handle weighs 75 tons and contains heat sensors to prevent ice formations":
(image credit: Scott)
But if you really want fantastic, whimsical, or wild, look no further than these Fairy Tale inspired architects (the left one could be discovered at Disneyland Paris, and the right one is located in Tinjunga, California):
(right image via)
This fantasy structure looks like it was more grown than built: part of the "Enchanted Forest" amusement park in British Columbia, Canada -
"Where Thou Art, That Is Home" indeed, Emily. But then there are those truly special people out there who not only have created art but live in it as well.
M. Christian is also the author of "Welcome to Weirdsville": a wonderful compendium of interesting subjects and fascinating topics. This is a highly recommended book for all lovers of weird & wonderful this side of the Universe; order the Kindle edition here.