Minimalism draws its greatest influence from Japan. The Zen philosophy, which places value on simplicity as a way to achieve inner freedom, manifests itself in Japanese architecture. It in turn began to exert a major influence in Western culture from the 18th century onwards.

The principle of seijaku – or silence – transforms the state achieved through meditation into design. Here, aesthetics are used to promote calm, harmony and balance.

Photocredit: NewArch, Varna

Minimalism in art
Minimalism in art Minimalism emerged as an important art movement in the USA in the 1960s. It emerged in opposition to abstract expressionism. Minimalist artists moved away from rich ornamentation and symbolism and focused on materials.

These young artists often worked with industrial materials such as concrete and steel, paying attention to their forms and physical properties. Their elegant artistic style does not rely on complex interpretations, avoiding the traditional values of fine art. Instead, Minimalist artists often challenge viewers to consider how physical objects affect their responses by reflecting on parameters such as weight, light, and height.

Design, Architecture and Minimalism

Photocredit: KoBo Architecture /

Minimalist architecture finds its roots not only in Japanese culture, but also in the De Stijl and Bauhaus movements of the 1920s. De Stijl’s use of abstraction and simplicity combined with the Bauhaus interest in using industrial materials and reductive forms are essential characteristics of minimalist architecture. De Stijl (Dutch for “style”) also known as Neoplasticism, is an artistic movement in the Netherlands. It began in 1917 and waned around 1931. This movement only existed for a short time, but it laid the foundations for minimalism.

The main principles advocated by the De Stijl movement were simplified visual compositions and the use of primary colors only (along with black and white). By “paring down” design to its basic elements and focusing on form, light, space and materials, minimalist architecture achieves harmony through simplicity. Minimalism as a way of life, as a worldview and as a design approach, does not bypass interior and industrial design.

Minimalism does not just mean white walls. By using clean lines and avoiding clutter, everything superfluous from the interior/product “disappears” until we get to the “pure” essence of the product or interior, its meaning and its function. Through the prism of interior design and architecture, minimalism means keeping surfaces clutter-free, prioritising functionality. Often a neutral or achromatic base colour is used, but different tones and a variety of textures can be incorporated, emphasising appropriate lighting as well to avoid a bland and boring look.

Photocredit: A.M. Project /

Photocredit: NewArch , Варна


Photocredit: Arch Studio Varna/ http://xn––

We can’t help but pay attention to so-called neo-minimalism, also called “neo-geometric” or “neo-geo”. This is a style of our time.

In this article we have included photos of projects by local architects from Varna that are good examples of a contemporary interpretation of minimalism. Neo minimalism is again about simplicity of form and colour, but compared to traditional minimalists it uses a lot more colour and form. Minimalism, including contemporary minimalism, is about extreme simplification of form. As a result, you cannot expect complex shapes and all the shades of colors. The use of colour and form in minimalist design and architecture varies over time.

While traditional minimalists limited themselves to squares, rectangles, horizontal and vertical lines and basic colours, today’s minimalists use more complex shapes and richer colour palettes. Nonetheless, it is still typical for (neo-) minimalists to use clean, simple shapes and color palettes that are limited to a few shades of one color, or that use several different but highly contrasting colors.

Photocredit: Topchiev Architects/

Photocredit: Decart /

We can simplify things by summarizing the characteristics of modern minimalism in architecture and design in 5 points: Simplicity in form and function Uncomplicated exterior and interior wall treatments Clean, open, light-filled spaces Simple detail without decoration Strategic use of materials and textures for visual interest.

Photocredit: Топчиев Архитекти/

Photocredit: Decart /

Photocredit: Arch Studio Varna/ http://xn––