" It seems to me that if I was to incorporate in my architecture all the poetry of which it was capable, then I should study the theory of volumes and analyze them, at the same time seeking to understand their properties, the power they have on our senses, their similarities to the human organsim."
Architecture, Essay On Art, Ettienne-Louis Boullee
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INTRO: FORM & REASON
Eight years ago, during my second semester of undergraduate studio I had chosen to analyze Villa La Roche-Jeanneret by Corbusier as a case study. Described as one of the best case studies, it served as a precedent for my very first attempt at designing a house, designing a Villa. Villa La Roche was a special project because it introduced Corbu's Five Points of Architecture and provided a complex way of thinking about interior space, how one navigates and can foreshadow program through an architectural promenade. An architectural investigation of phenomenology and human experience defines the gemoetry and the nuances in the architectural layout of the Villa. Link for a recollection on that case study -
In a very similar fashion, Villa Placer is conceptualized through form and program. A smart relationship between public and private spaces or masses is extracted from Corb's approach in La Roche, to the early stages of Villa Placer. To the right you can find the diagrams expressing that similarity and process of design thinking to develop the Villa. In where, we also come to understand the importance of the Five points of the Architectural Principle, as spaces and masses are elevated above the ground through pilotis, a free facade allows a sensation of customized horizontal windows, the roof garden is incorporated for sustainable measures, and the free design of the ground plan allows a meticulous architectural layout and promenade. It is through this principle and through the project's goal, in maximizing the inhabitant's pleasure through all senses, that the project is conceptualized. From the notion of the Visitor's promenade which invites the visitor through an entry Lobby/Art Gallery, up a series of stairs above an Aquarium, to the Jacuzzi/Library where water splashes and invigorates a sense of tranquility, up the ramp into a Corridor of Flashing Lights created by the free facade through a series of open slits, into the working Studio space reaching a moment of climax with a dramatic panoramic view of Downtown Miami and the rejuvenating islands, back into the Corridor of Flashing Lights, down the ramp into the Stars Lounge where one can have a drink at the bar, gaze at art work, watch sportscenter or have a game of billiards, to culminating the Visitor's Promenade into the Residential Living Area or the Living Lounge with a curved transparent double-height ceiling for a Starry Night Sky or a romantic rainy day where water drips along the surface. The visitor, whether handicapped has the option of taking the lift in the upper floors down to the Green Wall corridors in the ground floor and out into the infinity pool/outdoor lounge with the incredible view downtown or out of the house to finalize the experience, It is only at the end of the promenade that the visitor fully understands the glory of the house, where the kitchen has maximal views of all spaces, being the heart of the home.
The inhabitant's experience is much more different as the Villa introduces an entry through the garage space, which is also a gallery showcase on the front elevation, in where the inhabitant can go up the lift into the residential private areas or into the living lounge and up the dazzling stairs along side the night or daytime sky to the dining area. An interesting architectural experience is designed for a living/work environment in where one can have a relaxing read in the jacuzzi or on the sofa with a morning coffee before beginning the work day in the studio space, to then mingle in the lounge area for some drinks, into the dining area for the evening supper and finalizing the day in the living or residential lounge by the firepit, gazing at the downtown view in the sleek positioned couches or hitting the gym or infinity pool in the ground floor for some laps before going to sleep in the upper bedrooms. A fascinating architectural experience is designed through the investigation of private and public spaces. These spaces introduce an architectural form and layout developing a distinguished promenade as well as a mystique like no other of relaxed, active and mingle experiences as will be presented in the next post(s) . . . #StayTuned