Schwartz and Architecture (SaA)

Schwartz and Architecture (SaA)

San Francisco, CA


Crook | Cup | Bow | Twist

Crook | Cup | Bow | Twist specifically refers to categories of wood deformation and more broadly to the latent potential energy of all natural systems towards movement.   The design of this new residence attempts to harness the ephemeral sense of this movement as a way to promote within the buildings the exploratory qualities found in the wild landscape beyond.  The project is located on a 42-acre site in one of the inland valleys of the California Coastal Range.  Wide expanses of open grassland intersected by swaths of dense forests mark the area, which supports a variety of ranch, agricultural, and recreational uses. Passages from valley to hill, constructed to natural, and “tamed” to “un-tamed” provoke an immediate sense of exploration in the site — a wanderlust that gives the project its initial inspiration.  

While the project is almost entirely off the grid, and will meet the highest ratings given for sustainable construction, it is not by these measures only that the architecture seeks to be evaluated.  The design intent is to help expand our definition of “sustainable architecture” by elucidating a set of complex relationships between landscape, ecosystems, construction techniques, and human occupation. The building embeds itself in its environs not to camouflage itself or simply wear the mantle of “green”, but to proactively construct a series of spatial thresholds that promote the physical and psychological exploration of the site by propelling the inhabitants back into it.

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Status: Built
Location: Nicasio, CA, US