Living more than 2 meters above sea level (also) requires planning effort. On the slopes of El Retiro, Colombia, Minor LCLA Architecture Office She overcame the porosity of the natural environment and the construction difficulties associated with the elevated terrain morphology by dividing a large house into two parts. The double concrete structure accommodates family life in a tandem of sparse volumes placed on the steep slope of former forest plots, initially used for livestock grazing.
Half hidden by the greenery of the forest, softened by the outlines of other indigenous plants, such as wild orchids and bromeliads, The Brutalist architecture of Ballen House speaks to each other through a set of gardens With the magic of the mountain. “One house stands four meters above the ground on a single cruciform pillar,” as the project description reads, “while the other house, tall and partially sunken, acts as a retaining wall.” Thus, even the home experience differs “in the way in which Structural solutions create two different climates and relationships with the slopeOne is closer to the ground, similar to a cave, and the other is high and well ventilated.”
The red thread uniting the two halves is a series of measures on approved materials, finishes and proportions which, by sharing stainless steel details, window profiles and moldings for concrete, harmonize the individual buildings with each other, both inside and outside the walls. Even indoors, in fact, the choice to use similar functional and decorative solutions emphasizes the dependence of one house on the other. In addition to the service a Make homes look biggerOne of them has an area of 60 square meters and the other is 75 square meters.
Halfway between a nature refuge and a large sylvan terraceThe Ballen House, therefore, is not “an exercise in minimalist living, but an experience to cater for a larger space, relying on the gardens as complementary rooms to the interiors. Both structures provide completely different ambiances, using opposite ways to link…to the slope and the carefully designed outdoor area.”
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