Canadian architect Omar Gandhi has completed a wooden cabin for two artists that appears to be climbing up a hill in rural Nova Scotia (+ slideshow).
Surrounded by woodland, Moore Studio is built on the side of a slope so that the upper floor is accessible through the back door – an arrangement that creates jagged, asymmetrical elevations at each end.
While the western side of the house has a simple gabled roof, the eastern side of the roof has been split to create a long clerestory window on the upper floor.
The exterior walls are clad with vertical timber while seamed aluminium has been used on the roof.
Inside the house, plywood and chunky chipboard appear on the walls, floors and ceilings alongside industrial fixtures such as bare bulbs and concrete floors, "emphasising the rawness of the interior," as the architect explains.
On the ground floor are a double height kitchen, dining area and living room, leading to two bedrooms at the front of the house and two bathrooms and a storage room at the rear.
Two separate first-floor studios overlook the kitchen and are partly lit by the narrow glazing in the roof.
We've previously featured a writer's retreat in the woods of upstate New York and a series of artist's studios on a small island off the coast of Canada.
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Above photo is by Omar Gandhi
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Photographs are by Greg Richardson except where stated.
Here's some more information from the architects:
The clients, who are new empty-nesters with two dogs, had previously been full time artists before finding other work to support their family. The project is intended to be a vehicle for pursuing their youthful ambitions once again. The new home is built on a recently purchased piece of land amidst a dense forest in the small town of Hubbard’s, Nova Scotia, approximately 45 minutes south of the city of Halifax.
Ground floor plan - click above for larger image and key
The 1500 square foot house is designed to be left exceedingly raw, providing open spaces and allowing plenty of natural daylight to penetrate the interior. The objective was to provide a platform for their artistic aspirations to flourish once again, while also providing a quiet setting for the couple to enjoy the surrounding landscape with their dogs, free of the stress of the city.
First floor plan - click above for larger image and key
The project relies heavily on idea of metamorphosis. The point of departure for the form began as a simple and elegant gable with a 12:12 roof pitch, a vernacular form commonly found in Nova Scotia. As the design process began, the undemanding form began to shift and change to allow for the space and natural lighting requirements of the clients, while still relying heavily on the simplicity of the original gable.
The unique product of this distortion is a result of the relationship between all of the entities involved, including the landscape, the programme and the clients.
The palette of the designed house is soft wood, exposed to the sometimes harsh weather of Nova Scotia, aluminium roofing and concrete floors. The interior walls, floors and ceilings are clad in plywood and OSB, reducing the need for drywall to a minimum and emphasizing the rawness of the interior.
East elevation - click above for larger image
The ground floor includes a double height kitchen and dining space, a living room, 2 bedroom and bathrooms. The upper floor is separated into two individual studios for Peg and Garth, each looking down upon the kitchen from above.
South elevation - click above for larger image
Materials such as caged industrial fixtures, salvaged steel grating and natural construction materials (plywood) flank the interior space. Stretching along the main façade of the house is a continuous strip of windows, which allow for a long view of the property and opens up the main floor to the exterior.
West elevation - click above for larger image
The upper floor is lit by an end to end clerestory window. The upper floor also opens up to the rear bank as the house is built on the side of a natural hill. Adjacent to the house, a steel shipping container has been re-used as a shed. The house was built by young and highly skilled local contractors Mike Burns and Adam Smith at MRB Contracting.
North elevation - click above for larger image
Client: Peg and Garth Moore
Location: Hubbards, Nova Scotia
Project Status: Completed Winter 2012
Architect: Omar Gandhi Architect
Contractor: MRB Contracting (Mike Burns)
Structural Engineer: Andrea Doncaster
Physical Model: Ryan Beecroft, Jeff Shaw, Omar Gandhi (photography)