House in a Clearing
Owings Mill MD
This is a live/work house for a highly particular program and location. On a gently sloping clearing in a forest, the house is intended as a filter through which the site flows, unimpeded, while the orientation controls the seasonal sun entering the glassy, transparent structure.
Facing the east and west sides of the property, solid masonry walls bookend the body of the house. The long facades facing the slope are glass, placing the occupants on a platform open above and below to the woods beyond. The south face is pushed toward the tree line, providing full shading from summer sun while admitting the low rays of winter. The north face needs no shading as it opens to the long views into the meadow and trees beyond.
The main open space — living, dining, kitchen and workspaces, pared down to only what is essential — occupy one end of the platform while a bedroom and gym occupy the other.
Separating the two is a masonry core containing bathrooms, stairs and mechanical spaces, as well as two flexible-use small wood-lined rooms on a minimal second floor.
All materials have been chosen for their authenticity and longevity; steel, wood, concrete, concrete masonry and glass are the only materials used inside and out. There is no drywall and there is virtually no paint.
The result is a home full of nature and natural light, mixing work and life with no commute in a simple, clear, minimal style.
General Contractor – Design Alternatives Inc
Photography – Julia Heine