Australian firm ARM Architecture definitely has a unique style and approach to building design (see our post on the Portrait Building for another interesting example.) Taking their cue from Viennese architect Adolf Loos — who believed that apartment buildings fulfill different functions inside (a place to live) than out, where they should contribute to the quality of the street — ARM has some very unusual, leaning toward surreal, façade designs. One of their most recent projects, due to be completed in 2014, is the Orbis Building. A 7-story apartment building in South Melbourne, Orbis was inspired by the works of sculptor Anish Kapoor and surrealist Rene Magritte. The exterior plays with the perceptions of space and depth with its reflective gold concave and convex shapes. It’s interesting to see how the architects have continued, more subtly, these forms in the entrance lobby’s spherical caverns, and the apartments’ windows and balconies.
Orbis is the latest in a series of developments by the ARNO Corporation, which seeks to merge the boundaries of art and architecture and create buildings that themselves become works of public art. 20% of the apartments have already been presold.