Ranalli Studio Apartment+-

project name : Ranalli Studio Apartment

location : New York City

year of design: 1974

client: George Ranalli

architect: George Ranalli

associates: Robert Silman Structural Engineer

design team: Paula Beall

photographer: George Cserna

In a light-filled apartment, the design, a chalky bi-level element, composes an entry foyer leading to a tidy recessed kitchen space and a bathroom. The geometry also frames a view from the front door across a hallway of well-worn oak floor, into an open living space. Walking toward a large window of city views, the narrowness expands with the presence of a dinette space. A slightly elevated platform offers space near the kitchen for a table between chic upholstered banquette benches. The seating neatly conceals tableware storage. Above the cozy dining nook, a delicate circular line of light charms the evening meal. Further inside the main room, magically, an arabesque of a staircase, flanked by alcove bookshelves, ascends toward a cozy nest of a spacious loft bed, resting calmly beneath a shady geometrical canopy. The cantilevered sleeping berth crowns the dining space, and overlooks a pleasant double-height living room, with a large oak wood arch frame window, an element of utility from the old factory, now domesticated beneath a translucent sailcloth stretching from the top of the windows to a tall handcrafted wooden work desk. The diaphanous fabric defines an open study underneath, while shading the sleeping berth above, and filtering sunlight throughout.The design for a small apartment renovation is a process of abstraction which liberates and incorporates portions of existing conditions, and instigates an interplay of reflection and shadow among the bright white perimeter walls and ceiling, softer gray facets of the sculpted element, and the warmth of wood floors and factory window frame, to register impressions of comfort, function, and beauty in a living space.