Meadow House

Located on a large secluded plot of land in upstate New York, the Meadow House offers the perfect getaway for its creative owner, a retired English professor and artist. Its symmetrical plan, a perfect square divided evenly into nine smaller squares, is somewhat anomalous for a project that is otherwise strictly modern in its design. This 'classical' layout was used to set the space that was most important to the client, a large naturally-lit gallery area for displaying artwork, as the central focal point of the house. Two massive cast concrete walls located at adjacent sides of the gallery alsoreinforce this inward focus. The remaining program is consequently pushed away from the center to the house's perimeter–an ideal scenario for maximizing daylighting in living and work spaces.

Much like that of its interior, the design of the house's exterior had to be sensitive to a floor plan that was unusually symmetrical. As a way of emphasizing this effect, windows were aligned with the exterior and central axes of the house. Sliding louvered screens and irregular window mullions served as a playful foil to this symmetry. A hipped roof directs the eye toward the house's most prominent feature: a sloping clerestory level which rises from the center of the roof providing light for the gallery space inside.The roof and walls are clad in a single metal panel material to provide a overall unity to the house's form.

While much of the design is inward-focused, it was also important not to forget the house's relationship to the surrounding landscape. Eight large sliding glass doors allow quick access to the outside from virtually anywhere in the house. A large patio extends from the house's west side creating the perfect space to view an evening sunset. Further, strategically placed windows frame long axial views from the gallery and living areas.