Built architecture, architectural fantasies, research, custom furniture, and published work.
Lake Blaine Residence
Located close to the Canadian border on a small lake, this residence leverages the topography of the site to connect to the lake, both visually through extraordinary views and physically by inserting itself into the hill. The 16’ drop in grade from the house to the lake is further exaggerated by the ceiling which slopes upwards toward the lake, affirming incredible views of the lake and Flathead Valley.
The house is organized into 7 lateral zones, each with its own criteria for views, ceiling height, and square footage. Internally, the 7 zones are connected longitudinally by a dropped soffit that runs the full length of the house. The 7 adjacent zones create thresholds from changing ceiling heights which are pronounced by changes in width of the house, both program and material.
Location- Flathead Valley, Montana
Completed October 2014
General Contractor- Mindful Designs Inc
Interior Design Consultant- Jess Reese
The residence is located on Lake Blaine in Flathead Valley, Montana.
Roadside. Changes in depth along the length of the house create volumetric subtractions from the overall massing. Subtractions become the entryway and a small courtyard. The roadside elevation (pictured) privileges privacy over views, which results in scattered windows. Being on the low side of the shed roof, this elevation is more unassuming in comparison to the extroverted lakeside elevation.
Unlike the minimal and scattered use of glass on the roadside, the extroverted lakeside windows are organized into a grid system.
The house not only uses the 16’ drop west towards the lake for expansive views, but also makes use of the 12’ drop from north to south, creating varying sections for the full 130’ length of the house.
From entry, looking west out over Lake Blaine.
The dining room soffit separates the living room volumetrically from the kitchen while maintaining visual connection.
St George Residence
Southern Utah is the land of pastiche stick frame homes constructed to appear similar to Santa Fe adobe style. The imitated adobe construction features think earthen walls, as well as contrasting thin wood frame floors and portico, resulting in a dynamic spectrum of thickness and material use. However, the ubiquitous ‘Santa Fe’ stick frame home always seems to end up in the lazy middle ground of about 1’ wall covered in stucco. The result is a cartoony Fred Flintstone like house aesthetic.
This desert residence fights against the lazy middle ground by going simultaneously thicker and thinner. Some of the exterior windows, including the entry, are pushed deep to create a feeling of thicker walls. The depth also blocks the strong desert sun. Other areas of the house become thin by the use of oxidized metal siding and carefully placed glass walls. The house embraces transparency via the glass surrounding the entry door and the expansive glass wall on the north side of the home facing the canyon. The result is a dynamic house that is both strikingly massive and impossibly thin.
Location- Padre Canyon, Utah
Completed October 2014
General Contractor- Superior Homes
A Joshua tree acts as a courtyard anchor and plays with figure ground against curtain wall.
The recessed south facing entry blocks the desert sun.
South facing elevation with dramatic Padre Canyon cliffs behind.
Coordinated with structural engineer and contractor to recess glass frames into the floor and ceiling. A concealed moment frame is used in place of visible structure in the external wall. Spectacular views of Padre Canyon beyond.
Reinstating the intrinsic value of the primitive solid
This thesis project identifies a deficiency in the demonstration of the intrinsic value of the primitive solid within contemporary architecture. Even when present in current form-making strategies, the intrinsic value of the primitive solid is deflected to or masked by legibility of process, indexing of program, or ornamental façade treatments. In other words, the aesthetic and spatial qualities of the primitive solid are obscured by reductive or relational formal justifications. Through historical analysis and speculative design, this thesis project aims to reemphasize the aesthetic and spatial qualities inherent to primitive solid forms. Parallel to the study and use of primitive solid forms, the design investigation will seek to rejuvenate a typology that is of little value to the discipline of architecture, the developer driven shopping mall. Because of their large size and complex programming, malls suffer from long corridors and confusing retail space organization. And because of their suburban locations, most malls tend to be single-story buildings that are basic extrusions of the floor plan, resulting in structures with low design value and compromised presence within their suburban contexts.
The formally diverse, legible, and monumental aesthetic and spatial qualities of primitive solids offer solutions to the bland, uninspiring, and undifferentiated retail spaces of shopping malls. Through careful curation and orchestration of aesthetic and spatial experiences, this thesis seeks to employ primitive solid forms and their inherent formal spatial qualities to simultaneously renew the significance of the primitive solid within the discipline of architecture and the shopping mall building typology within contemporary culture. Aesthetically, this project recuperates monumentality and the potential civic presence of shopping malls by utilizing primitive solid forms. Formally and spatially, this project presents new assemblages of primitive solid forms that demonstrate the sufficient nature of the primitive solids as a form and space-making device for contemporary architecture.
1. Spiritualized. Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space. Dedicated. 1996 2. Primitive solids include spheres, cubes, cylinders, and pyramids. 3. See BIG Architects, TEK Cube, Taipei, 2010 4. See MVRDV, Silodam, Amsterdam, 2003 5. See UNStudio, La Defense Offices, Netherlands, 1999 and Herzog & De Meuron, Signal Box, Basel, 1994 6. ‘reductive’ and ‘relational,’ terms adapted from “Undermining and Overmining,” coined by Graham Harman in ‘The Quadruple Object’. Zero Books,. 2011
Thesis Adviser- Kyle Miller
Fall 2014-Spring 2015
Analyzed precedent projects.
Quick Boulee mash-up.
Quick Ledoux mash-up.
Plan at +0'
Plan at +66'
Custom Furniture and details
Coordinated curtain wall, embedded steel and recessed sun screen.
Recessed glass frame and curtain track in offices.
6”x36” Vein Cut Limestone to match 6” Maple.
3/8” Joint throughout soffit and cabinets.
2016 May/June, Mountain Living. Lake Blaine Residence
2015 Revit Handbook. Render used on cover.
I am honored that the Lake Blaine Residence was published on the front cover and received an 8 page feature in Mountain Living magazine.
In partnership with Nathan Geller, our rendering was selected for the cover of the 2015 official Revit handbook. Author Eric Wing.
The Garden in the Machine
What would the world be like with limitless amounts of close to free energy? Conservative estimates are that this possibility will become a reality through fusion reactions within 15-30 years.
Using NYC as the site of inquiry, this project pushes past the current paradigm of conserving energy and being ‘green’ to grapple with the possibly catastrophic effects of limitless energy.
Aesthetic inspiration is taken from fusion reactors which are far more technically advanced than current architecture.
This project also challenges what we accept as ‘real’ when convincing facsimile images are placed next to real ones, what is actually ‘real’ can be reconsidered. And through this logic, alternate histories are also possible.
The following pages contain real events and some constructed ones. It is up to the observer to decide which ones are only real on paper.