Operable Boundary Townhouse/Garden in Brooklyn

In the words of the Dean/Wolf Architects:

Operable Boundary Townhouse/Garden creates a new field of openness excavated out of the lower level of an existing traditional townhouse in Brooklyn Heights. Removing all of the servant spaces from the house at both the garden level and the parlor floor liberates the space from it’s previous secondary status. The traditional boundary between parlor and kitchen is opened through the excavation of a two story space over the dining space and the light apertures between the parlor and the kitchen which cut into the security of the traditional floor which separates them. The kitchen/dining space becomes an entertaining space and a family space equivalent to the formal parlor spaces overhead. Open to each other as well as the garden, it becomes an open field of occupation rather than a closed relationship of proximity and view.


Likewise, the boundary between the garden and the house is opened. The operable window/door floating in the field of glass allows the visual/physical relationship between the garden and the house to fluctuate. Joining the two spaces is a translucent table which slides between interior and exterior. This fluctuation between separation and joining defined by the window/door and table relationship accentuates the capacity of the boundary to reconfigure and define alternate relationships between them.



Audain Art Museum in Whistler

The Audain Art Museum designed by Patkau Architects is a 56,000 square foot museum located in Whistler, British Columbia. It will house Michael Audain’s personal art collection which traces a visual record of British Columbia from the late 18th century to the present day. The design of the museum is shaped by three powerful determinants. The first determinant is the need to house both the permanent exhibition of Michael Audain’s collection and, in juxtaposition with this collection, temporary exhibits of all kinds from across Canada and around the world. The second determinant is the beautiful but challenging site in Whistler which, although blessed by magnificent evergreen forest vegetation, is located within the floodplain of Fitzsimmons Creek. The third determinant is the enormous snowfall typical of Whistler which averages nearly 15 ft annual accumulated depth.


Patkau Architects’ design responds to these determinants, simply and directly, by projecting a volume of sequential public spaces and galleries into an existing linear void within the surrounding forest. It is elevated a full storey above the ground and crowned with a steeply sloped roof, containing administration and back-of-house support functions.


The Art of Peter Harris 

Peter Harris was born in London,Ontario and currently lives and works in Toronto, Ontario.  He completed a degree in Fine Arts at the University of Waterloo in 1997.  In the years since he has exhibited his oil paintings in group and solo exhibitions in Canada and the United States.


The work included in this post is from the series Art and Architecture, in the words of the artist:

As a landscape painter, I strive to create images that connect viewers to their immediate surroundings. While my work is situated in the present, it often invokes artists from the past whose paintings linger in our collective memory and influence how we think about the landscape. Edward Hopper and Lawren Harris are two such artists whose iconic imagery still resonates, and whose reputation casts a long shadow over all artists working within the genre. In the exhibition Evening with Hopper I began by meticulously recreating their historical paintings in miniature and framing them within current urban architecture. I wanted their historical depictions to be subsumed by the modern, acknowledging the power of their legacy while challenging their continued relevancy to a contemporary audience. Source


Shelf-Pod in Osaka

Shelf-Pod is a private residence and study building designed by Kazuya Morita Architecture Studio, located in Osaka prefecture, Japan.  In the words of the architects:

The client owns an extensive collection of books on the subject of Islamic history, so he requested that we create this building with the maximum capacity for its storage and exhibition. In order to satisfy this demand effectively, we designed a lattice structure made from 25mm thick laminated pine-board which serve as book-shelves. All of the architectural elements in this space (stairs, windows, desks, chairs, etc) have been designed on the basis of this shelf scale, with the aim of achieving geometrical harmony which is comparable to Islamic Architecture.


This innovative structural system affords not only large amount of book storage, but the possibility of flexible floor level which can be delivered from
every height of bookshelf. Each space for different activity rise up helically,
giving the impression of exploring a wooden jungle gym.


The Rockefeller Family Gardens

In The Rockefeller Family Gardens, photographer Larry Lederman gives readers unprecedented access to the two Kykuit gardens—the expansive Beaux-Arts–style garden and a little-known Japanese garden, brought to life by Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller. This book also takes readers inside the garden at Eyrie, the family summer retreat in Seal Harbor, Maine. There, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller collaborated with noted designer Beatrix Farrand to design a walled garden inspired by Asian aesthetics at the perimeter and filled with traditional perennials.


Lederman’s photographs capture the beauty of these gardens in all seasons, focusing on the geometry of the designs and the color and light that animates them. This tour through the spaces is accompanied by text from Todd Forrest of the New York Botanical Garden, Cassie Banning of the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Garden, and Cynthia Bronson Altman of Kykuit to provide commentary on the design and plant materials featured in this captivating collection of photos.


Read more about the book on The Mondacelli Press website.

Villa Kget in Ensuès-la-Redonne

Marseilles-based architects Bonte & Mogozzi designed “Villa Kget”, a wood cabin offering sweeping views of the Mediterranean Sea. 


Perched upon a hilltop site formerly occupied by an old shed, the 225 square meter villa sits on stilts so as to respect its surrounding environment of lush greenery, including fig, eucalyptus and viburnum trees. A vertical structure fronted by vertical larches, Kget was built on two levels connected by a concrete staircase. The garden level comprises a bathroom and two bedrooms, whilst the ground floor hosts the living room and kitchen. A large terrace and generous bay windows offer breathtaking views out over the Mediterranean sea and its changing temperament throughout the day.



Valkenberg Estate in Twente

Located in Twente, the Netherlands, the building designed by Ard de Vries Architecten lies on one the most beautiful sites of the country, in the middle of a pasture bordered by vibrant green forests and hedges. The client, who owns a dairy farm, have been living in this area for years. Considering the roots of the family’s traditions, the building was constructed taking their daily routines into account.


In this way their everyday rituals that take place outside can pass directly into the family rituals that take place inside the house,” explained the architects. Taking advantage of the surrounding scenic views, the architects made sure to connect the building to the nature as much as possible. The expected effect was achieved by extensive windows, featured all over the house, stretching from the floor up to the ceiling. Using local, naturally grown raw materials, the studio was able to preserve the traditional value of the construction. The base of the house is made out of sandstones, which the family obtained from a demolished house, while the beautiful wood, used throughout the exterior and interior of the whole house, is made out of the surrounding oak trees. The truly stunning house is a manifestation of architectural competence and fresh thinking.



A blog curated by Roberto Cruz Niemiec with the best of Architecture, Design and Art.