Leaving the timber structure intact, California architectural firm Carver+Schicketanz clad the exterior with huge translucent panels.
The quaint early twentieth century seating and daffy flower arrangement evoke something of the period.
Haus Neufert by Gatermann + Schossig architects is anchored by a surprising glass cube popped through the roof at its center.
The popped out section creates some lovely spaces delineated by glass.
The interior becomes one with nature.
The house is set in the art-strewn grounds of the existing heritage home and features a self contained apartment.
Its cool, metal cladding system is that of an anonymous commercial building.
It is an unusual use of the familiar and anonymous cladding, bringing it to the realm of the artistic.
But the metallic exterior that might seem incongruous in its park like setting, also has an ethereal quality, refracting light and receiving the strange shadows of trees.
This is a garden guest house that enables a witness to art and nature in a peaceful and creative environment.
A curious series of zigs and zags define the elusive shape of the 4 Courtyard Houses by Think Architecture.
Located in Zumikon, Switzerland, the four houses are identical, each wrapped around their own courtyard.
These interior courtyards are modular and private spaces.
The combination of full glass walls and the courtyards creates a series of light-filled spaces.
Each has curiously shaped skylights popped up from their roofs, giving the group a unique identity.
The bold zig zag design anchors the group.
Concrete and limestone is finished in two contrasting textures and colours to give definition to the zigzag shapes.
To get the contrasting textural effect, the grey was admixed with tiny gritty grey stones, while the smooth white stucco is blended with limestone powder for a silky touch.
“The four houses are built up in a modular way,” say the architects. “Identical in the basic conception but mirrored in the common middle and reacting individually to the particular topographic situation.”
A huge double-height atrium is the heart of the Limantos residence by Fernanda Marques Arquitetos Associados.
The three-level home houses an art-loving family in the upscale neighbourhood of Cidade Jardim in São Paulo, Brazil.
The house is set in lush landscaping on a steep 8,395 sq.ft site.
Inspired by the spirit of Mies van der Rohe, Marques has created a timeless house for this family.
The huge glazed structure inhabits its forest setting like a breathing creature.
Suspended among the trees, one family member enjoys a rare reading perch.
The wall of glazing disappears into a series of Japanese folding screens.
A perfect spiral staircase is a work of art in itself: like curled strip of paper.
Seen at the far end of the great room, it is completely natural and unforced.
In creating a home for both private family life and for entertaining, Marques achieves a beautiful balance between maximum transparency and privacy.
Question: What could be better than kicking up your feet near a cozy fireplace this winter? Answer: Absolutely nothing. Cold dark months filled with snow and frigid temperatures require a warm centerpiece for relaxing and entertaining. And just because a fireplace recalls cozy feelings of tradition doesn’t mean a fireplace has to be traditional.
Check out the custom-made four-sided Acucraft gas fireplace, above. The best thing about a fire in a glass box is that it can sit in the middle of the room, allowing more people to gather around its warmth and beauty. Glass fireplaces give off radiant heat on all sides, which is a big plus in long narrow rooms where a fireplace on one end might not adequately heat a space. When it comes to glass-paned fireplaces, the amount of heat they radiate depends on whether they are made of single or dual pane glass. The look is clean, modern, and not at all fussy.
You’ll find another custom option with a totally different feel in the gas fireplace below. Wood panels and stone create the surround. Inside the fireplace are stones for decorative interest. Bonus: theycontinue to radiate heat after the fire has been extinguished. A gas fixture allows the fire to take a long narrow shape.
Why not go totally mod? The Italian Oggifocus Fireplace from Diligence International below looks best when a Lucio Fontana painting sits above! We especially like the minimal, curved wood mantle, that supplies just the right amount of emphasis, but in a very subtle way.
Got a small space? This simple Emifocus fireplace, also from Diligence International looks a little bit like a ship’s porthole, or else a giant eyeball. The fireplace can be supplied with a visible flue or with the flue exiting behind. Very original!
In the age of the ubiquitous screen, some of us just don’t want to pull ourselves away. Check out the Eurofocus fireplace below, that looks like a giant television screen. It can be placed centrally in a room or flat against a wall.
Although the 60s are over, suspended fireplaces still hold a warm place in our hearts. That’s because they function as sculpture, right smack dab in the middle of a room. Check out the one below, also from Diligence International.
Sometimes what’s on order is not so much a fireplace, as a stove. Stoves can generate quite a bit of heat, and they are much more flexible in terms of where they can be located. In the beach house below, a stove makes a sculptural statement and helps provide heat for both the living area and the entry way.
The vacation house below also boasts a stove — especially cool because the stovepipe echoes the pillars found throughout the room. The result is that the stove looks like it was meant to be, not just an afterthought.
And what do you do if you have a tall narrow space, but you’re hankering for a fireplace? Witness the Vertivision fireplace below that looks almost more like a traditional window than a fireplace.
So if you’re thinking about adding or upgrading your fireplace this winter, know that you have a slew of great options. Fireplace doesn’t have to take the traditional shape. In fact, it can be a lot more fun when it’s a little different!