View 6 Homes That Rise to the Rural Landscape

View 6 Homes That Rise to the Rural Landscape

In the dawn of time, humankind has built various forms of shelter in all kinds of landscapes. Our ancestors’ chief concerns were shelter and protection. Contemporary design concepts as well as the notion of construction sensitively weren’t a part of their vocabulary. However, by constructing from local materials, their buildings often looked as a natural extension of the landscape. Over time several became”romantic ruins,” gradually being reabsorbed back into the ground.

Nowadays we are apt to build considerably larger homes to encourage our increasingly complex lifestyles. We also construct from a wide array of industrially processed substances with significant embodied energy. At the end of their life cycles, contemporary buildings don’t slip back into the landscape. When combined with construction in a rural landscape, all these factors move us far beyond the basic necessities, forcing us to carefully analyze where, how and what we build.

SeARCH Architecture and Urban Planning

Designing a home for a rural place might seem to be free of the constraints of designing for an urban or suburban location. Nonetheless, this is not necessarily the case. Houses are rarely built in complete isolation without reference to the surrounding landscape and local building traditions. These are translated is a measure of the success of the home in integrating and becoming a part of the landscape.

Here we will see how architects have responded to different challenges arising from construction in sensitive landscapes and/or climatically harsh surroundings.

Villa Vals, Switzerland (2008), Christian Muller Architects and SeArch

Villa Vals is a modern take on the subterranean dwellings of old. As a result of specific sensitivity of the website, which is adjoining to the extraordinary Therme Vals by Peter Zumthor, the architects chose to bury the home deep into a steep hillside, leaving the surrounding nature undisturbed. Its expression is as a void in the mountain rather than as an object sitting on the hill.

SeARCH Architecture and Urban Planning

The building’s form is obviously in contrast to the traditional alpine architecture, but it joins with all the local building tradition through its use of local materials in its own observable facade. An underground passageway brings the new and the old together, using a tiny nearby barn behaving as the primary entrance to the villa.

SeARCH Architecture and Urban Planning

The round below-ground courtyard is similar to the underground courtyards in Matamat, Tunisia.

Elliott + Elliott Architecture

Pond House, Maine (2010), Elliot + Elliot Architecture

This home is a meeting of three cottages on a wooded coastal strip in Maine. The bedroom areas are in two cottages on the edge of the pond partially hidden in the forests, while the living space is projected out across the pond on stilts.

Elliott + Elliott Architecture

The breaking of the home into easy volumes with aluminum roofs and shingle cladding gives it the look of a coastal settlement, comfy within its surroundings. From the architect’s voice, Maine’s”natural, cultural and architectural heritage gives our starting point and inspiration”

Princeton Architectural Press

Outpost, Idaho (2007), Olson Kundig

This house and artist’s studio is set in a brutal high-desert landscape. From a distance it has the look of protective walled settlement, at sea in a wild and inhospitable landscape. It’s reminiscent of an isolated monastery or even a sea tanker. The customer’s wish was to live on the land instead of in the structure.

Princeton Architectural Press

In this picture the two-story house-studio appears to float above a long, enclosed concrete-walled backyard. The assembly of garden and house is called a protective cocoon with a hard exterior to withstand extreme weather conditions and a soft inside.

Know more about Olson Kundig’s founder, Jim Olson, along with his inspirations

Eggleston Farkas Architects

Methow Cabin, Winthrop, Washington, Eggleston Farkas Architects

This cedar-clad mountain escape in a meadow in a cross-country skiing area could be confused for an agricultural barn on initial glance.

The mono-pitched roof suits both function and form. From the architect’s words, it”echoes the slope of the hills outside, while allowing snow to slide off easily.”

Eggleston Farkas Architects

Part of the attractiveness of the building is its easy, streamlined form with no added bits — even the timber logs are integrated as the foundation and increase its own grain and texture. The building functions as an item in the landscape, particularly because it’s unencumbered by the automobiles that usually abut most homes.

ZeroEnergy Design

Passive House Retreat, New England, Zero Energy Design

That is an elegant home carefully made to low-energy passive standards. It has a compact footprint with large openings into the south and tiny openings into the north. It’s clad in wood shingles each the neighborhood convention, without a superfluous detailing. The home sits naturally and delicately one of a meadow of wild grasses and flowers.

House at Helvick Head, Waterford, Ireland, O’Briain Beary Architects

A streamlined rectangular form tucked into the hillside overlooking the harbor, this home (located halfway up the mountain in this shot) is reminiscent of the midcentury flat-roofed holiday houses in the region.

By subtly terracing the home inside, the architects successfully maintained the opinion of Dungarven Bay for the neighbors behind the home.

The lower terrace together with all the living areas faces across the bay, together with all the upper bedroom patio opening on a young orchard behind.

Constructed from locally sourced materials and finished with self-finish plaster, the home includes a pure simplicity which keeps together with the local convention.

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