The ground of 20m x 30m located in the forest of Mar Azul, Argentina has the particularity of a very important unevenness respect of the two streets it faces. While this complicates the resolution of access to the site provides the advantage that, if the house is located high, it is very little exposed to the gaze from the street, and also from the inside you can get views of the landscape above the neighboring buildings. This difference in level is more or less smooth to the back of the lot, but it is very sharp towards the opposite front and in this area the forest is also thinned.
The order of the client was a three-bedroom house that
did not exceed 120m2, designed to be used not only in summer but on several
occasions throughout the year.In
particular was pointed out the need for a generously sized main bedroom, which
should have a private bathroom and a certain independence from the rest of the
house. The other two bedrooms could share a bath and have a minimal surface, so
as to give the social area as much space as possible. The kitchen (a very
important space for the client) should be fully integrated into this area and
was especially highlighted the need for generous outdoor expansions. It also
required a deposit for storing of different elements for beach sports.
Regarding the formal requirements, while requested a concrete house, i.e. aesthetic and constructive proposal similar to the other houses built by the studio in Mar Azul, this commission gave permission to try any search that characterize the experience.
On the client’s permission expressed in the phrase
“you may risk proposing a variant of the built houses,” and in the
particularity of the lot and the required program, lay the uniqueness of this
The search for formal variants was not easy since it
does not involve change of technology, nor conception of spatiality (that stay
more than clear in the first talks) but it intended to make some kind of new
contribution without giving up those premises. The proposal could have been
testing with new textures of concrete, even with the addition of pigments, but
all these procedures appeared to contradict our posture rather austere and non
aestheticist of architecture. The solution came by chance when we notice that
in the process of producing works of exposed concrete, there is an important
remaining of wooden planks used to make the formwork. It seemed then
interesting, and also conducive in order to take advantage of every resource
available, to reuse these tables in the execution of some wooden walls. This is
how we started to think the project from replacing some exterior and interior
concrete walls with partitions of tables and wooden structure.
In relation to the volume, the house was resolved as
two prisms at different heights and perpendicular to each other, united by a
ladder that saves the difference, and located between pine trees in the highest
sector of the lot. In the volume parallel to the direction of the slope, with
one side partially buried and the other in situation of balcony, are placed the
gathering activities of the family group plus the two small bedrooms. The
volume perpendicular to the slope enjoys proximity with the foliage of pine
trees that rise from the ground and there is placed the main bedroom with
bathroom and terrace.