Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Casa Cien-

Decisive coincidences such as the amount of steps on a hill path nearby, or the statue of an old cypress that reminds those described by Pater, or even the whole number of the elevation above sea level that defines the podium could be used to explain the format of this building’s silhouette. But the reasons that shape a house are always others; always the same ones.
Within two unified formats, an extended floor plan and a concentrated one, we organize the same unit twelve times: a square figure asymmetrically divided into four rooms.
Sometimes central, others lateral, or even in a diagonal disposition, each unit establishes a different relation amongst the rooms. Potentially, the lower rooms will be occupied with the heavy duties of a workshop. The upper rooms with the almost immaterial routines of the everyday trades, always imagining edifices from the air to, sooner or later, fabricate them somewhere else. Trapped between these two factual worlds the domestic life rests protected; a large room for the daily use and a couple of bedrooms piled on it for the night. The main room steps down towards the west. By maintaining the lintels at one defined horizon, the progressive sequence of frames makes the perception of its depth relative. Entering the main room is equivalent to diving under the platform defined by the whole number. You reach the studio by facing a mirror that shows in the inside what lies across the street. Entering the tower is a kind of blindness. Here, the cypress turned into steps locks into a continuous spiral that slowly offers the sight back while ascending. The construction is a regular and monolithic layering of concrete with exposed aggregate. A slight change in the size of the gravel differentiates the texture of the podium to that of the tower. In the interior the walls are wrapped by surfaces of painted wood, almost without thickness and barely interrupted by the galvanized steel frames that hold the windows in place.

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