elii [oficina de arquitectura]


076 · susaloon

Every house is a theatre

Refurbishment of a minimal space, Madrid 


Selected work to be part of the Spanish Pavillion in the 15th International Architecture of Venize, 2016, winner of the Golden Lion, 2016

Every house is a theatre

How can you get a multitude of spaces out of only one?

Susaloon is a minimal intervention in a domestic space to convert Susana’s home into a flexible and transformable space.

The project development comprises three simple strategies. The first one is an acupuncture operation to adapt the configuration of the space to the needs of its inhabitant, relocating certain household items to optimise the distribution and everyday use.

The second strategy involves opening up certain divisions to extend some spaces such as the living room. There will thus be more natural lighting and wonderful views of the Madrid horizon for the inhabitable spaces.

The third strategy is the integration of a series of fold-down and sliding devices that are used to divide the spaces, deploy a work space, a large dining table, a bed for a surprise guest, a spacious area to practice shiatsu or to reorganise the storage space.

As a result, the main space of the house is configured like the black box in a theatre: a stage that can alter the domestic setting with simple operations that turn one house into many.


1. One space, many spaces. Susaloon works like a Swiss army knife: a compact element that allows different configurations to be deployed to adapt to everyday life.

Experiments with oneself.

2. Black box. These transformable technologies work like the fly-rail system of a theater placed vertically. A versatile device turns the living room into a small domestic theatre (#domestictheater): a black box where life takes place in a new stage every day.

Every house, a theatre.

3. Black-boxing to experiment. The processes are unblack-boxed (#openblackbox), but the spaces are black-boxed (in a theatrical sense) to rehearse, test, try out and prototype the experiences, habits, relationships and day-to-day life.

Every day, a rehearsal.

4. System adaptations. This work is one of a series of projects of transformable domestic spaces (#livinginablackbox). In this case, the system of the home theatre is adapted to the tastes, life experiences and imaginaries of its inhabitant, bringing the transparencies of faraway lands or the lightness of foreign cultures to the centre of Madrid.

Linking of spaces.

  • Architects:
  • elii - Uriel Fogué + Eva Gil + Carlos Palacios
  • Team:
  • Pedro P. García, Alicia García, Claire Laborde
  • Developer:
  • Susana Ciriza
  • Construction:
  • Dionisio Torralba Constucciones
  • Carpentry:
  • Alfredo Merino Caldas
  • Fotography and video:
  • Miguel de Guzmán
  • Size:
  • 23,50 m2
  • Date:
  • 2014
  • Location:
  • Madrid