New home finds the right angle

Jez Abbott
12 Feb 2019

Architect FreelandBuck has just completed a smooth yet angular residential project.

Second House in Culver City, Los Angeles, is a new 1,500-square-foot home - an intricate aggregation of interior and exterior volumes.

Lead designers for the Los Angeles-and-New York-based firm were Brennan Buck and David Freeland with the design team including Johannes Beck and Nick Schwaller.

Located on a tight built-up site the new structure borrows the steeply pitched surrounding rooflines while turning inward around a private, central courtyard.

Each room of the house is expressed as a distinct block paired with a corresponding exterior space (two entry alcoves and a balcony overlooking the courtyard) carved from the buildable footprint.

Even though the program is articulated as separate volumes, the interior and exterior spaces are woven together into a single, visually continuous living space.

Transitions and thresholds are emphasized by an alternating arrangement of material surfaces, creating a series of dramatically different spaces that are integrated into a single environment.

Floor materials such as tight-veined grey limestone and white stained knotty pine suggest distinctions between interior and exterior.

Interior stairs are painted bright red and orange, with the colors leaking into adjacent bedrooms and living spaces depending upon light intensity and time of day.

Light cascades into high windows that provide views to the sky and hills. The exterior meanwhile is clad with custom-patterned cement board panels and can be read as a monolithic mass.

The house strikes a balance between volumetric distinction and spatial continuity and creates an environment in constant modulation; whether by natural and artificial light, the opening of doors and windows, or the configuration of furniture.

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