March 30, 2014

Building with awareness.

Far from being dull and lifeless, the arid landscapes of the American southwest offer the richest color palettes in the country. Umber, ocher, copper, silver, gray and gold are ancient colors offered by the earth. Purples are found in deep shadows and bursting sunsets, while blues appear in the endless skies and vibrant turquoise stones.

Pueblo homes have been around for thousands of years. They were built by indigenous people out of adobe, a material made of packed earth, clay, straw, sticks, and stone. Basket loads of adobe was plastered on walls and dried in the sun. The resulting thick walls provide superior insulation.  Adobe an inexpensive insulator is used in modern architecture as a passive solar collector. The sun's heat travels through the adobe slow enough to reach the interior as night falls, heating the house through the night.

In order to preserve the surroundings and native flora we maintained minimum site disturbance. The terrace is designed to maximize view and minimize heat gain. There are energy efficient low-e windows and use of sustainable materials throughout. 

March 2, 2014


...the designer must be able to see - make a concentrated effort to absorb the essence of the project. Seeing is a very difficult thing to do. Most people look at a lot of things but never see anything.
Looking is emotional; seeing is an intellectual process.
~Albert Hadley

It takes patience to design a compact space that feels like a joy to return to rather than a compromise.  Designed for a young professional it is tailor-made for frequent overnight stays.  The one-room space (50 sq m) was sub-divided to allow for a bathroom and kitchenette to be added.  Practical lay-out decisions ensured that the space feels relaxing and easy to live with.