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A Pair of All-Black Houses Duke it Out in the Death Cage




Left: Möhringen, Germany; right: Kent, UK

Circulating the Internet lately are two houses painted black as pitch: one a 2008 transformation by artists Simon Jung and Erik Sturm in Möhringen, Germany, the other a rubber-clad beach house in Kent, UK, meant to "respond to the drama and harshness of the landscape." Both are done up entirely in noir, both are Reddit fodder, and both look like options in a special Addams Family episode of House Hunters International. But the important question: which one is cooler? How does one decide? As always, shove them into a metaphorical cage and let them battle it out until one emerges victorious. Yep, that's right: it's time for a special edition of Design Deathmatch.

And now, the photos:

Photos via Reddit

? The main appeal of this black house in Möhringen, which recently enjoyed a rendezvous on Reddit's much-ballyhoo'd front page, is its fastidiousness and thorough dedication to painting the entire thing. The entire thing. Doors? Black. Windows? Black. Chimney? Black. Rooftop? Puh-lease. The other thing this place, an abandoned house transformed by artists Simon Jung and Erik Sturm in 2008, has going for it is an amusing and unrestrained string of commentary provided by Redditors and Imgur frequenters—there's even a poem! There is one doozy of a downside, though: the place no longer exists. Worse, it's replaced by this totally ugly contemporary gallery.

Photos via Architizer

? One obvious point-to-the-good for this beach shack, updated by London-based architecture firm Simon Conder Associates to "respond to the drama and harshness" of Kent's Dungeness Beach landscape, is the simple presence of interior photos. Cool interior photos. Sure, the 1930s fisherman's hut is not quite as balls-to-the-wall as Germany's paint-it-black number, but the shack (1) can actually be lived in, (2) comes with a 1954 Airstream caravan, (3) wears what's basically a waterproof rubber wetsuit, and (4) boasts a cantilevered bath that looks out to the sea. Plus the rubber cladding (ethylene propylene diene monomer, if you want to get technical) is water resistant, withstands extreme temperatures, and keeps warm in winter.

Poll results

· An All-Black house in Germany [Reddit]
· Black Rubber Beach House [Architizer]
· British Beach Shack is Clad in Waterproof Rubber Wetsuit [Curbed National]