Tree House by Matt Fajkus Architecture

The skylight allows natural light to penetrate deep into the space. The master suite is as much about its opening to the small yard as it is about the enclosed space it captures. In plan, the home is organized into clear zones of public and private function, allowing the center courtyard with the primary tree to negotiate the connection between either realm. This design is carefully calibrated to allow internal views on the small lot and various amounts of direct and indirect natural light. The courtyard design capitalizes on the dappled light from the preserved Live Oak tree, which animates exterior and interior spaces at different times through the day. The 2-story “window wall” maximizes the use of inexpensive windows which frame various views to the tree while creating a rich elevation and allowing for the harvesting of daylight to the entry zone. Composed of crisply-detailed, considered materials, surfaces and finishes, the home is a balance of sophistication and restraint. The courtyard around the tree terraces down to the yard, acting as a natural amphitheater for gatherings and performances within the wings of the house. The tongue-and-groove wood ceiling is an accent which continues to the exterior soffit, blurring the lines between inside and outside. Each space has more than one type of opening to allow for various connections to the outside and thus nature. The layout is arranged to optimize function and experience, where each daily behavior is considered in connection with the next, resulting in a holistic and flowing composition, rather than just a collection of rooms. Massing is composed as two single-story wings which wrap the primary existing Live Oak tree on the site. The upper portion of the wall tapers and folds back to allow the tree canopy to extend and grow. An integrated board formed concrete planter denotes a spatial separation between the living room and the kitchen/dining space, while still allowing connection between the overlapping realms. Composed as a functional container for life and experience, the circulation space is intended for passage and informal activities, rather than corridors.

Updated: 10.12.2014 — 00:24