This single family residence is a deconstructed limestone cube with a rotated internal grid. The narrow three-story entry axial canyon brings natural light deep into the heart of the house. Dramatic shadows cast on the interior canyon
walls, quietly revealing the passage of time. The limestone cube is deconstructed with subtle level changes, carefully placed windows, and outdoor terraces shaded by cantilevered louvers, which open up the space as one ascends towards the sky.
The design genesis has naturalistic, historic, and programmatic forces that shape the house concurrently. Located on a steep hillside above a dry creek, the house resembles large limestone boulders often chanced upon in the hill country by hikers. Furthermore, their natural beauty and fossilized ancient coral reef and marine life forms, which have been sculpted by gradual wind and water erosion over millions of years, was a desired element for the house.
Historically this house is a tentative attempt to explore the textile block legacy of Wright’s work. While researching the California Romanza work we were inspired by a stone lantern made with design of a single textile block from the Freeman house. The notion that the DNA of a house can be captured in a single building block, establishing a relationship between the whole and the parts seems to be a marginalized idea we were interested in investigating.
These ideas were overlaid with the logistical and programmatic requirement of the clients, as well as relationship to the geometry of the existing building below. Even though the sizable lot is close to an acre, the narrow shape and tight building setback lines impose stringent restriction on the building envelope.
Various stages of the design process were also inspired and informed by our impression of area stone quarry visits. The spatial porosity pay homage to unique regional places such as the Longhorn Cavern. This project will explore different textures of stone in a modern three dimensional re-interpretation of Renaissance concepts of rustication. The experience will be a gradual transition from rough large stone blocks of the exterior, to the progressively smoother interior surface. Attempts will be made to use recycled stone from the quarry boneyard wherever possible, inspired by the stone wall at Roberto Burle Marx’s ranch in Rio which salvaged stone from demolished churches.