This is my entry for the Murdoch-Laing competition in the McGill School of Architecture. We were asked to design a modest family house in Westmount.
“The family that lives in this house does not believe in displaying wealth through the bigger or shiner. They do not want a house that would require them to hire a full-time maiden. They do consider their house as a place to rest, close to each other. Proximity to bare nature is something they cherish, as it brings them closer to inner peace. They know simplicity is hard to achieve.
In Westmount, especially near the summit, the typical house doesn't consider properly it's relation to topography or nature. More often than not, grass is cut short, bushes are trimmed and gardens are fenced. This house has a very different approach, as it almost completely disappears in the hill. Only the very solid presence on the southeast side tells of the human presence.
Right angles is the language of the house as organic is the language of trees. All the living spaces are connected on a longitudinal axis and share an intimate proximity with the wild garden. Sleeping spaces are tucked in on one end of the building, three steps higher, for an increase feeling of security. Evening light enters from a top window, illuminating the rooms with diffuse light; morning light come through loopholes, creating forest-like light patterns.”
The Human Body Shack.