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Keret House exterior

Construction is finally finished on Keret House, a structure several years in the making that's being called the narrowest house in the world. Located in a passageway between two buildings in Warsaw, Poland's Wola district, the two-story structure measures 4 feet at its widest point and 27 inches at its narrowest. Keret House looks like a 30-foot-tall rectangle lodged between buildings, but amazingly, it boasts all the amenities -- except, of course, for a king-size bed and 60-inch flat-panel TV.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

View from above

Polish architect Jakub Szczesny of the experimental-architecture collective Centrala conceived of Keret House as a part-time abode for acclaimed Israeli writer Etgar Keret, the son of Holocaust survivors whose Polish mother was interned in the Warsaw Ghetto and lost close family members during the tragedy. Here, the view from the second floor of Keret House, looking down at the entrance steps, which go up and down at the press of a button and can be accessed via trap door. A regular sofa wouldn't fit in the living room, but a bean-bag couch does just fine.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

Things are looking up

Author Etgar Keret traveled from his home in Tel Aviv, Israel, to Warsaw, Poland, for the opening of Keret House last month and spent a night in his eponymous home squeezed between buildings on Chlodna and Zelazna streets. When he's not living and working in the space, other artists from around the world will be invited to stay there for days and weeks at a time (fittingly, it's officially an "art installation" since it doesn't meet Polish building standards for homes.)
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

View from the stairs

Keret House might be exceedingly narrow, but at 30 feet tall at its apex, it does have high ceilings. A colorful coat hanger and bright yellow chair stand out amid the largely white design.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

Climbing required

Writer Etgar Keret, who's best known for his short stories, practices ascending to the bedroom of Keret House via metal ladder. That's the only way to get there.
Photo by: Dom Kereta

Sleeping a single

The bedroom in Keret House accommodates a nearly double-size bed and has a small work desk and chair. The structure's translucent polycarbonate facade finished with perforated steel, plus ample light from the windows, makes the whole place seem bigger.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

Bathroom area

Yes, it's possible to shower at Keret House -- in a tiny washroom that resembles an airplane WC and is separated from the tiny kitchenette with a sliding door. The little roost relies on an independent, boat-inspired water and sewage system.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

Narrow entrance

Behind a metal door at 22 Chlodna Street in Warsaw, Poland, visitors to Keret House will find steps that provide access to the interior. Stilts raise the body of the house. Etgar Keret's mother, who spent part of World War II interned in the Warsaw Ghetto, immediately recognized the site of the house when her son first showed her a picture.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha

Keret resting

On opening day at Keret House, writer Etgar Keret gets some shut-eye (or, more likely, pretends to) while a photographer captures the moment.
Photo by: Copyright Polish Modern Art Foundation/Bartek Warzecha


A mockup of the triangular Keret House before completion. "Everything seemed to stand on [sic] its way: the space narrowness, the infrastructure, law, and money," architect Jakub Szczesny says. But he persisted -- with assistance. Warsaw City Hall donated about $45,500 to Keret House, and organizations including the Polish Modern Art Foundation, National Centre for Culture, and Polish Institute in Tel Aviv partnered on it.
Photo by: Centrala

Frame being moved

The steel frame of the super-slim Keret House was assembled in steel-skeleton form in a workshop just outside of Warsaw, Poland, and transported to the site by crane. Polish architect Jakub Szczesny says he was drawn to the narrow space between a prewar apartment building and a postwar co-op because of the history it embodied.

"I fell in love with a space between two buildings from different periods," The New York Times quoted Szczesny as saying. "I decided to make a link."

Photo by: Centrala


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