Location: Sonoma County, Northern California, United States of America
Architect: Mork-Ulnes Architects
Client: Lars Richardson, Laila Carlsen
Material: Concrete, Steel & Wood
Design date: 2010
Completion date: 2017
Site area: 232m2
Built area: 299m2
Design Team: Greg Ladigin, Casper Mork-Ulnes, Andreas Tingulstad, Nick Damner, Kyle Anderson
Project consultants Structural engineer: Dave Rogina, Rogina Pestell Engineering
General Contractor : Damner Construction (Phase 1), Natal Modica Construction Inc. (Phase 2)
Photographer: Bruce Damonte, Grant Harder
Text provided by the architects:
“We wanted to create an indoor/outdoor environment that is comfortable, interesting, and attractive. A place that is conducive to a sustainable lifestyle,” said the clients.
The main structure is a 2500sf artist’s studio, office, and storage building that is clad in barn wood through inverts the pitched-roof form of the original. The inverted pitch roof creates sweeping double-height spaces for art production and storage while providing natural ventilation, natural light, and views out toward the property. A 720 sf concrete kitchen and dining space grow out from the studio. Nicknamed the “Amoeba,” it reaches toward the landscape and literally captures it to create a lush interior garden that softly separates the kitchen from the dining area. The roof is an exposed wood, scissor-beam roof construction with a large, diffuse skylight that brings light into the center of the building for people and plants. Though its form and material may seem foreign, it follows a similar pitched form as its host and is board-formed using the same barn wood as formwork. When the concrete had dried the boards were removed and reused as a fence elsewhere on the property, further continuing many decades-old material lineages.
“lars wanted an outdoor kitchen and dining room that he could use year-round,” says architect Casper Mork-Ulnes “the idea was to let the landscape bleed in and out of the building. he imagined it as a jungle, with exotic plants, such as papaya, banana, and mango, inside and out.”