Natural Houses: The Residential Architecture of Andersson-Wise
For Arthur Andersson and Chris Wise, the fundamental elements that give buildings meaning are found in nature.Imbuing day-to-day activities with poetry and awe, their designs address both pragmatic needs and the psychological yearning for refuge and contemplation, centering and escape, joy and comfort. Their work is best experienced through the senses. Tactility, expressed through an eloquence of craft, the use of textured materials, and the logical design of structural systems, gives their buildings a rightness within the landscape. In their hands, daylight becomes a building material. Small wall apertures, three-sided dormers, clerestories, and other details grab, bend, and thread sunlight from one end of their houses to the other. Full of light and atmosphere, the houses are the physical embodiment of the great Charles Moore's influential tenet that architecture is about enhancing a sense of place.
Natural Houses presents seven of the Austin, Texas-based firm's exquisitely crafted projects. Precise and cool, with forms often derived from the American vernacular of barns and cottages, these are painstakingly crafted houses made from regionally appropriate and aesthetically timeless materials. Natural Houses presents a range of sites and residences—from a small cabin in the woods to a multibuilding camp. Sited on a cliff, the House Above Lake Austin uses terraces to descend its steeply hilly site. The building's simple materials celebrate thesite and climate not by drawing attention to themselves, but by blending in. The stone foundation is similarly tied to the natural stone of the mountain. Smooth plaster walls above the stone foundation appear to have been chiseled from the rock itself. In a deceptively simple boathouse the walls fold down to become impromptu diving platforms.
Exceptional photography captures the light and atmosphere of each project setting and illustrates how the firm rigorously expresses the design concept through detailing and construction. An introduction by Rick Sundberg of Olson Sundberg Kundig Allen Architects and essays by Jen Renzi and Frederick Steiner chart the firm's evolution and influences.
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Introduction by Rick Sundberg
Super Natural by Jen Renzi
House Above Lake Austin
Stone Creek Camp
On the Salubrity of Sites by Frederick Sreiner
Cabin on Flathead Lake
Project Team Credits
aesthetic Andersson and Chris Andersson and Wise Andersson explains Andersson-Wise design architects Architecture of Andersson-Wise Art Gray Arthur Andersson bedroom buildings built Cabin on Flathead ceiling Charles Moore Chris Wise Christopher Sanders Collector's House context cooling cordwood wall Cottage detail overleaf Dining room Douglas fir Duval County Entry environment experience feel firm's Flathead Lake gatehouse glass Guesthouse Sunset Henry David Thoreau hill House Above Lake inside interior Kitchen Lake Austin Lake House Lake Travis landscape light living room lodge looking south looking west Massaranduba Master House materials Matthew Ames Matthew Millman Montana Moore's Mud room natural outdoors palette partners Paul Bardagjy ponderosa pine prevailing breezes prospect and refuge roof Salubrity of Sites says Andersson says Wise sense sleeping porch looking slope steel Stone Creek Camp structure studio summer sunlight surfaces sustainable design Temple Ranch terrace Texas top to bottom Tower House trees Vitruvius wood