Prix du XXe siècle — 2007 Recipient | Royal Architectural Institute of Canada

Prix du XXe siècle — 2007 Recipient

Smith House 2 (1964)


Award Category: 
Prix du XXe siècle

The Smith House is approached through the forest. From the entrance the view across the courtyard and under the living room bridge offers the light from the sea far away through the fir trees.

The inner courtyard is an architectural reiteration of the forest clearing – a moment of containment before the release of space into the surroundings. Progressive discovery of the house and site is made possible by overlapping and stepping up each wing of the house in a kind of spiral. It starts at the porte cochere, climbs up to the kitchen-dining wing, up to the living room, then to the bedrooms and continues outside to the roof of the porte cochere, up to the roof of the kitchen and so on, intimating an endless spiral. At each corner is an anchor point – the studio at the entrance corner, the dining terrace at the viewpoint, the living room terrace into the forest, and a bedroom terrace edging the forest.

The living room is a suspended box of rough wood and glass, the studio is a skylit solid enclosure with narrow slits of windows giving an even illumination to all the walls.

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