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The Architectural Trio: Edition #18
This week’s Trio was very difficult to put together, since many of the projects didn’t appeal to me for some reason. Some were close to being worthy of inclusion, however there were elements missing that stopped the projects from being exceptional. Speaking in broader terms about this week in architecture, I feel I should comment on the United Kingdom’s decision to leave the European Union. I am deeply disappointed by the result, and concerned for the future of my country, especially since I will soon be finishing university and searching for a job. This has prompted me to research working as an architect in other countries which has thrown up some interesting and exciting possibilities.
BC Passive House Factory, Canada, Hemsworth Architecture
This factory produces timber panels for use in certified Passive House buildings, hence the company wanted to reflect their ideals and the quality of their products in the building. Horizontal cladding planks of varying density protect the west and south facades from harsh solar gain whilst maintaining the spectacular views of the nearby mountains. Clerestory windows naturally light the interior, bathing the large open space in a warm glow. What I like most about this building is its sophistication in simplicity. Despite essentially being a standard box, the creative use of timber and exposed structure give the factory a light and interesting appeal.
Casa Bosques, Brazil, Colnaghi Arquitetura
Casa Bosques uses materials beautifully in their raw state to present a rugged and heavyweight charm. The holiday home is used for the resident family to relax and socialise in Xangrilá, a municipality on the South coast of Brazil. The house is formed of three connected volumes that increase in width towards the front of the building. Their appearance is unashamedly strong and imposing, showing off the size of the house. However, large areas of glazing add an aspect of lightness and transparency, as well as improving the internal comfort through daylighting. What made this house stand out to me is how pleasingly the strong verticals and horizontals intersect with one another. Especially internally, planes of varying materials pass over one another which adds dynamism to the composition. Board marked concrete has been widely used, which is fast becoming one of my favourite materials due to its tactile, organic and raw qualities.
Peter's House, Denmark, Studio David Thulstrup
Created from a former factory, this photographer’s house sits beside his studio. The architect and client decided to retain three brick walls from the original building, which run around the border of the site. A major challenge was admitting daylight into the building, since the perimeter walls have few windows. To overcome this issue an atrium tunnels through the centre of the plan, with the upper panels partially mirrored to bounce light downward. The client wanted green space which is provided in abundance, a large achievement in such a small plot. The atrium is full of foliage that is typically found in Scandinavian woodland, and a roof terrace also contains plants. The photographer client has used his creative eye to select and combine a wide variety of materials which playfully alter the light in different spaces. Brick, timber, black steel, terrazzo and velvet all combine into a unified aesthetic on the whole, as can be seen in the photographs taken by the client himself. Externally, thin timber slats which will age to a grey tone as the building ages add interest to the simple facade.