B14 is a villa on the southern periphery of a mature neigbourhood. It borders a lava field and has unrestricted views to the Bláfjöll mountain ridge. Built on the site of the clients previous house the foundation pad was garnered from the crushed concrete of the former dwelling. All other materials were sorted during the demolition process and recycled.
The site is trapezoidal in form; narrow on the north side and wide on the south. This simple fact was the catalyst for the folded, fan-like roof geometry that was to become so important for the development of the design.
Within the house the smaller, intimate spaces such as bedrooms, bathrooms and laundry room, are located towards the north beneath a series of sharply pitched roofs. The family, screening and work spaces are in the heart of the building and along the south face, under a gently rippling roof, are the living, dining and kitchen areas with an open fireplace at each end.
Parallel to these spaces is the garage, day-lit with generous skylights, and the entrance lobby cum gallery: The only white painted room in the house. Elsewhere the palette is primarily in-situ concrete and kampala timber with exposed steel beams. Special surfaces are of polished black granite and calacatta marble. The bathrooms are lined with arabescato and marquina marble and generous mirror walls. Buried in the deth of the plan is a stair of sawn basalt illuminated by a solitary skylight. It leads to the basement workshop and store.
The house is at the end of a cul-de-sac, and the long approach is culminated by an inverted kampala-beamed roof over a power-floated concrete entrance yard. A long copper wall conceals the adjacent garage and the understated front door. With the exception of columnar basalt planes at points of emphasis the external walls are of the same in-situ concrete as the interior. The roof is a new landscape of wild grass and heather. From the valleys between the northern gables rainwater trickles down the walls in open copper channels.
All windows and door joinery were custom made of kampala and those serving the bathrooms are shielded with horizontal copper louvers. On south façade, overlooking the lava field, the windows are from floor to ceiling beneath an overreaching kampala and steel canopy. Two large sliding doors open the dining room to this protected external space.
The former dwelling had a rich, mature, garden and this has been conserved as much as possible. Gaps in the planting are filled with relocated plants from the original garden that would otherwise have been destroyed and new species to balance the range and scale of flora. Paving is of irregular, basalt plates, cut in slices from large rocks, and laid with hoggin that will encourage the growth of delicate mosses and lichens.
Client : Jón Pálmason & Elísabet Björnsdóttir
Architects : Studio Granda
Structural & environmental Engineers : Viðsjá
Electrical Engineers : VJÍ
Fire consultants : Efla
Contractor: J&S verktakar
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