Located along the coast of Big Sur, California, Sea Song by Form4 Architecture is a single-family residence whose sail-like roofed pavilions have been colorfully described as gliding Manta Rays, seashells, crustaceans, and other ocean creatures. Aside its graceful design, the home's sustainability features and minimal footprint ultimately caught the attention of the Chicago Athenaeum in the American Architecture Awards competition.
Earlier this month, Form4 Architecture received a 2017 American Architecture Award for Sea Song. The San Franciso-based practice also received the American Prize for Architecture in recognition of their full body of work and design philosophy.
Read on for more about Sea Song.
“The vast plane of the Pacific Ocean and the ruggedness of the coastline set the stage for this gentle architectural insertion. Unobtrusive by design, it is both private from the main road and utterly transparent to what lies ahead. Many descriptors capture what holds together this composition: a trio of gliding Manta Rays, expressive cellular design, a parallel topography to the existing one, sail-like roofed pavilions, a village of transparent huts, the list goes on.”
Sea Song is built from “pure shapes [that] are biomorphic, evocative of sea shells, crustaceans, and other creatures of the water world, responsive to the rock formations and the existing ecosystem. Its environmental footprint is virtually null. They are soft on their footprint, being raised on a cantilevered podium, of minimum disturbance on the site.”
“Sea Song is also an architectural creature breathing with its natural surroundings. This trio is designed to be self-sustaining, net zero energy, and aims at LEED Platinum certification. The full array of sustainable techniques is employed consolidating that the architecture is a natural extension of this site. Photo voltaics ease off-the-grid living. Self-cleaning glass, rainwater retention cistern, and xeriscape secure the sensible use of water sources. And the landscaping is intentionally kept non-formal, to reinforce the intent that Sea Song has always belonged to this site. Mecho-shades screen light passing through the wide expanses of glass, while the building cocoons itself against unwanted changes of the elements.”
“Internally, it is an immaterial enclosure with no corridors, all living spaces. The three structures are alike in mass and architectural elements, but scaled differently to adhere to the specific program requirements. Materials alone tell the story of the house. Concrete baths anchor forms to the earth where the programmatic part resides. All else floats in inebriating lightness.
In each, the enclosed concrete split core holds service functions (bathrooms, walk-in closets, laundry), giving maximum open areas to the mostly column-free surrounding vistas, the determining experience for occupants and visitors throughout. Two bedrooms are clustered in the outer cell at the opposite end of the access road, whereas the master bedroom and a studio are located in the middle building. Point of arrival from the main thoroughfare is the bigger volume containing the public quarters, where guests can lounge in one uninterrupted flowing space.”
In case you missed it, see more of the winning American Architecture Awards projects in the link below.
All images courtesy of Form4 Architecture. Quoted text via.
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