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This Modern Pyramid House Pays Homage To Classic Architecture

Maybe the Egyptians had it right all along.

This contemporary manifestation of the iconic pyramid form makes an emphatic statement about the simplicity of an inherently structural architectural expression. Before architects and builders developed building technology to more efficiently battle gravity’s limitations, we relied on literal formal response to those rules. Simply put, the higher you built, the smaller the footprint. The result was the pyramid: a pure geometric form that allowed ancient builders to reach heights never seen before.

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This conceptual design from Mexican architect Juan Carlos Ramos pays homage to this classic vernacular while mixing in features that can only be constructed using modern techniques and materials. It’s an interesting dichotomy of old vs. new, telling a story of how far we’ve come as builders. For example, one of the facades is completely transparent, housing a massive triangular glazed opening.

04 Horizontal and vertical slices are cut into the pyramid, opening up areas for decks, views, and even a car port.

03 The main living space welcomes an open view to the outside, speaking to the structural and architectural feats we are able to achieve.

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An Old Barn Receives A Modern Facelift

An old barn in upstate New York proved an abundant source of modern inspiration for architect Kimberly Peck. On the exterior, little was done as far as architectural expression in order to preserve the traditional gabled roof form of the existing barn. The simple addition of three large sliding doors on one side open up the interior, which was the main focus of the renovation.

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The old columns and beams have been left alone and remain the primary conceptual, providing a rustic framework for the secondary additions to adhere to. The result is a harmonious mixture of old and new, paying homage to the history of the barn while providing the comfort and functionality of a modern facelift.

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Jaw-Dropping Views Await In This Stunning Copper-Clad Beach House

A breathtaking and vertigo-inducing 250 foot drop to the Pacific Ocean provides a daunting, yet beautiful backdrop for this modern beach house. The Buck Creek House, designed by California-based firm Fougeron Architecture, marries the sea with the surf through strategic openings that frame only the most jaw-dropping views.

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The unique aesthetic of the home’s exterior make a fleeting attempt to steal your attention from the crystal blue water, but do so in vein. The back end of the home is largely opaque for purposes of privacy, and clad in shimmering copper panels that change throughout the day depending on the light. However, there is no containing the sea-side facade, which opens completely to pier over the looming shear cliff.

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The interiors are clean, sleek, and do just what only what’s necessary to supplement the ocean views. High vaulted ceilings expand the spaces vertically, allowing light and air to flow through the home with elegant determination. This spectacular beach house has three bedrooms, a cantilevered master suite and a living room that opens to an adjacent exterior courtyard.

Old Meets New In This Stunning Ancient Stone Home Remodel

Some of the most emotionally visceral architectural achievements are a result of a properly handled adaptive re-use. Blending the old with the new is a delicate exercise in restraint and creativity. So when one comes around that achieves such a sought-after level of success, we feel the obligation to share it with you.

Wespi de Meuron Romeo Architects renovated this ancient stone building, which has long-since resided in a historic and picturesque Swiss village. The rustic, monolithic shell provided an apt base of inspiration for the architect to draw upon when designing the interiors and carving openings into its facades. Although there is much that is new, contemporary and modern to be found inside, you are never far removed from the history that exists in what remains of the stone ruins.

This project shows us the importance of our history, and to take the time to appreciate where we’ve come from as we move to where we are going.

photo credit: Hannes Henz

This ‘Stealth’ Getaway Isn’t Your Grampa’s Log Cabin

Through the use of aerodynamic lines and application of native materials, the Stealth Cabin by Superkül inc flies under the radar of imposing visual impact in an attempt to recede into the natural environment it inhabits.

The sleek 4-season cabin is a contemporary take on the storied log cabin vernacular, and is meant to champion the generous wealth of resources the forest provides for shelter, warmth and protection. While not as small or as modest in stature as many other secluded vacation spots, the Stealth Cabin never feels overwhelming in its form and makes a point to embrace the aspects of the site that make it unique.

The 1500 square foot structure takes every opportunity to expose itself to the spectacular forest scenery. Large windows and massive sliding doors let the trees pour into the conditioned spaces creating a symbiotic indoor/outdoor experience.

63.02° House Takes A Turn On Japanese Modernism

This stark, utilitarian home in Nakana, Tokyo gets its geometric namesake from the angle it takes to the adjacent street: 63.02°. All windows and doors, including the main entry, are concentrated outward from the angled facade that is prominently exposed as if sliced clean like a hot samurai sword through miso.

The abundance of exposed concrete – both interior and exterior – is common in contemporary Japanese architecture and gives the structure a juxtaposing visual heaviness that is offset by the delicately revealed curtain wall. Interiors are minimal and subdued, drawing further attention to the primary focal point that is the angled facade. The home was designed by Schemata Architecture Office.

Rare Sighting: A PreFab Home That Looks Natural In The Wild

It’s often difficult for a pre-fabricated home or building to have a cohesive relationship with its building site. Even if great care is taken to orient the factory-built structure to best highlight the important views, topography, etc., they can have a tendency to feel tacked on rather than integrated with their surroundings.

This particular project by German industrial designers Patrick Frey and Bjorn Gotte manages to come off the shelf and into the wild with a soft and subtle nuance not often seen in pre-fab.

The Summerhaus Piu PreFab Vacation Home boasts a clean, warm material palette that quickly associates it with its surrounding environment. There is some flexibility in the design and manufacturing process that allows materials to be applied smartly based on native and available materials. This gives the home a closer connection to its final resting place regardless of where that might be. Large openings bring in light, and the home is pointed out towards the best, most scenic views.

Offgrid In Normandy: How He Built This Modern A-Frame On A Budget

When you think of living off the grid, various images come to mind, and no doubt some of you envision grizzled people huddled together for warmth, living in some remote forest.

A Little Caesars commercial recently illustrated this in a funny way:

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However, that’s not the most accurate portrayal of life off the grid. As Jean-Baptiste Barache demonstrated, building an offgrid house for cheap doesn’t mean you need to compromise living conditions. His A-frame barn, stationed in the middle of a field in Normandy, France, is a perfect example.

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He paid a local barn builder to construct the rough frame, and then collected various salvaged materials from all over the place – lumber from theater sets, veneer and particleboard, and red cedar shingles for the exterior cladding. All said and done after 18 months of working on the build, he estimates it cost around $105k.

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Going without electricity doesn’t mean forgoing power, but it does cast daily life in a much simpler mold. A gas canister fuels the simple stovetop in the kitchen; a homemade wood-burning stove diffuses heat through the house in a slow, steady burn.

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The front of the barn looks decidedly antique…

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While inside, the rough, unfinished walls and ceiling keep costs down. Upstairs you’ll find three “pods” for sleeping.

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At night he and his wife light candles and oil lamps, and Jean-Baptiste refers to Junichiro Tanizaki’s “In Praise of Shadows” as a source of inspiration for living comfortably without electricity, noting the appreciation he has for the shadows cast by the flickering flames.

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Images: Céline Clanet

This Triangular Summer Escape Was Built From Salvaged Material

Swedish architect Leo Qvarsebo has built a geometrically inspired home out of mostly salvaged materials that was initially envisioned as a “tree house for adults.” The triangular shape results in a sloping facade that opens out to Sweden’s county side and even doubles as a recreational climbing wall! On the inside, a series of overlapping spaces create interesting nooks and an abundance of modern charm. Large south-facing openings bring in plenty of light and exploit the sprawling views offered by the landscape.

The interior boasts finished birch plywood panels that were salvaged from an old puzzle factory, adding to the story of the summer home’s conception and construction. The application of material reinforces the playful character of the form and function of the spaces themselves.

This Artist’s Home Exudes Modern Rustic Style

Demolition of an old house made room for this elegant new home/studio complex in the Barton Heights neighborhood of Austin. Not a lot of room, because there was already a swimming pool on the property, as well as oak and cypress trees that owner Laurie Frick didn’t want to knock down. But designer KRBD still found a way to give Laurie 1,600 square feet of residential space in addition to the 700-square-foot art studio she asked for by building around a gallery of steel bays.

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Around the home, that steel is covered with tigerwood; the studio has a stucco exterior.

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Once you get inside you’re met with a long hallway displaying rugs, books, and some of Laurie’s own art pieces. Such an outstanding collection really cries out for a place to show it off, making the hallway a very nice touch for this particular owner.

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After you pass through, you’re in a large, open living room/dining room/kitchen area which gives way to the pool in the back. An enclosed glass walkway connects the house to the studio, which is naturally lit by a skylight and clerestory windows (Laurie needed the wall space for her paintings, so ground-level windows were out of the question).

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A clerestory window also features in the master bedroom, which is located at the other end of the entry hall. The ensuite bathroom has one too, and there’s a skylight in the hallway guest bathroom. The home office to the front of the house has a more conventional picture window which looks out on a very pleasant street view.

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