Tuesday, July 14, 2009


“A house is a machine for living in.”
— Le Corbusier


It starts with the land. The site. The space.

Earth. Grass and trees. Wind. Sky. Air, light and water. A concrete slab in the ground. Empty space.

Then there is energy. Walls, and then windows, and doors. They capture the air. They focus the light. They harness the energy, channel it. They frame the space.

Gradually, they assemble, piece by piece, connecting, growing. It is evolutionary. It is organic.

A living thing.

It starts with the house. A single-family house. A two-story. Or a one-story. Or maybe a townhouse. A mid-rise. A condominium. A loft. Urban, suburban or rural.

A patio? A garden? A greenhouse. A green. house. A beach house. A swimming pool! A fountain in the middle of a lake, arching to the sky.

Then there is the style: Old World. Mediterranean. Tuscan. Country French. Spanish. English. Spanish Colonial. A Hacienda. French Colonial. Traditional, or modern.

Brick. Wood. Stone. Elements, materials and details. Steps and stairs. Gables and eaves. Turrets. Maybe towers. The fireplace.

It is all connected. There is a method to the madness: A constant repetition of a single, simple formula: replication. Consistency of proportion. Symmetry. Unity. Purity. It is aesthetic.

A living work of art.

It starts with the person. A living human being. More than one, or several. A family.

Celebrations. Laughter. Guests. Community. Some call it the living room. Or the family room. Or just, the “big room.” From where they sit, they can see the fountain in the middle of the lake. It surges. With it, they raise their glasses to the sky.

Graduations. Marriage. Births, and deaths. Coming and going. Small becomes big. And the old becomes new. A new energy.

And a house becomes a home.



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January 11, 2010 4:34 AM  

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