Studio Granda - Hof residence, Iceland
Wednesday, 09 April 2008 02:29
Hof is a new country residence in the Skakafjörður fjord, less than 100km from the Arctic Circle in Iceland.
The spectacle of the location, its remoteness and special program fuelled a unique rapport between the client, contractor and architect resulting in a building that is in every respect a direct consequence of that collaboration.
The existing assemblage of buildings on the estate included a house,
church, barn and cowshed clustered on a riverbank. Further inland are
recently constructed horse stables. The wide fjörd has a mountainous
rim punctuated with long valleys embracing the cliff islands of
Drangey, Málmey and the graphic foreland Þórðarhöfði. The new residence
is slightly removed from the old cluster on raised ground, with each
room and space orientated to capture this magnificent panorama.
Externally the house rises from the tufted site as a series of sheer
cedar and concrete walls that will weather according to the vagaries of
the elements. The displaced grass of the field is reinstated on the
roof and the surrounding meadow is cut and folded in earthworks of turf
and stone that open ways to the entrance and terraces.
pillars were excavated from the site during the preparations for the
foundations and the external surfaces are paved in this material.
Internally the same stone is used throughout the living and circulation
Most internal walls are of raw or painted concrete and the ceilings,
doors and other carpentry are predominately of oiled sawn oak with
steel details; a rustic palette offset by smooth painted planes.
gesture of refinement and escape the kitchen and bathrooms enjoy marble
surfaces suggestive of more habitable latitudes whereas the larder’s
glazed white tiles and basalt shelves reminds of the need to stash food
for harsh winters.
Although dramatic views fill the interior the ambience is augmented by
a secondary system of clearstory lights and other roof penetrations
that orchestrate daylight throughout the house. The exception is the
dogleg route between the living and bedroom wings where lighting is
reduced to a few pinpricks.
Project credits and information:
Client : Lilja Pálmadóttir & Baltasar Kormákur Baltasarsson
Architects : Studio Granda
Structural & environmental engineers : Víðsjá
Electrical services : VJÍ
Contractor : Trésmiðjan Borg
Completion: November 2006
All material, text and photographs in this article are courtesy of the architect
Last Updated on Thursday, 10 April 2008 07:14