Mexico City House by Pedro Reyes and Carla Fernández located in Mexico City, Mexico
Mexico City House by Pedro Reyes and Carla Fernández located in Mexico City, Mexico. Mexican artist Pedro Reyes and his wife, fashion designer Carla Fernández designed a gorgeous house that is an exceptional example of Brutalist Beauty. The couple built their beautiful Home in Coyoacán, south of Mexico City, it is a peculiar structure that was envisioned as a dwelling for the caveman of the future. The source of inspiration for the concept are the ruins of a civilization, now extinct, which was more advanced than the one we’re living in now, according to the designers. Hammered concrete walls, chunky furniture from volcanic stone and an abundance of rich, overblown greenery all come together to form an architectural masterpiece. Part of the remarkable stone floor is inspired by the nearby Anahuacalli Museum, the “temple” designed by Rivera in 1957 as a depository for his collection of 60,000 pre-Hispanic artifacts. Elsewhere, hammered concrete floors and walls were inspired by the Mexican brutalists, in particular, 89-year-old Teodoro González de León, who built many landmarks across the Mexican capital.
Ancient Aztecs meet The Martian Chronicles in the form of hammered concrete walls, chunky furniture hewn from volcanic stone and an abundance of rich, overblown greenery. A “pyramid” at one end is Carla’s studio, a yard behind it will be Pedro’s. It’s currently a ramshackle plot occupied by the team of artisans that is helping finish the house. “The use of concrete is very canonical, very clichéd, but it has many possibilities,” says Reyes, pointing out the handmade bricks covered with a wax-like concrete paste, which he, and his team, developed specifically for this project.
The couple also designed much of the furniture, a series of chunky unusual constructs that are deemed artworks in their own right, while at the same time serving a functional purpose. The lava-stone master bath and basin and the concrete kitchen table are two of the most imposing pieces, but perhaps the centerpiece of the house is a ceiling light, made of copper tubes threaded through an electrical wire. The striking ceiling light is inspired by the work of Buckminster Fuller, as is a 4m-high geodesic dome being completed in the living room. Another distinctive piece of furniture is Reyes’ sign language-inspired “Mano-Sillas” chairs, that appear alongside international and Mexican midcentury classics from the likes of Charles and Ray Eames and Clara Porset, and simple rural pieces such as milking stools, leather butaque chairs and seats woven from palm fronds. “The technique was used by the Aztecs and has been recovered by the design-conscious, but not in any official way,” says Reyes. “It would be great to make them on a large scale in other raw materials”. Revisiting ancient indigenous skills and developing a modern Mexican language lies at the heart of Fernández’s work, in particular.
Between the master bedroom and the two children’s bedrooms, there is space for one of “the best hammocks in Mexico”. These are woven by women from cooperatives in Izamal in Yucatán and Calkiní in Campeche, take two months to make and can sleep a family of four. The multitude of cultural symbolism is no coincidence. Before becoming an artist, Reyes trained as an architect at the Ibero-American University in Mexico City. His plan in designing the house was to transform 1.000 square meters of a “1980s monstrosity” into a modern space that includes hints of all of Mexico’s many modern cultural aspects. Enjoy the best parts of this Brutalist Beauty in the gallery below.
Words via DesignIsThis
Photos by Edmund Sumner
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Trousdale Estates by famed developer Paul Trousdale, located in Beverly Hill, Ca. | The Hardt
Trousdale Estates by famed developer Paul Trousdale, located in Beverly Hill, Ca. Trousdale Estates is a 410-acre enclave of large, luxurious homes in Beverly Hills, California. Primarily developed in the 1950s and ’60s, it quickly became famous for its concentration of celebrity residents and the unrestrained extravagance of its midcentury modern architecture. Often working with unlimited budgets, these designers created sprawling, elegant backdrops for the ultimate expression of the American Dream in the mid-to-late twentieth century. In Trousdale, Price explores the architectural backgrounds, details, and floor plans of the amazing homes, giving readers an inside view of the world-famous Beverly Hills style. Lavish new photography is interspersed with archival and historic images, illustrating the glamour of Trousdale both then and now.
Very few, if any, other places on the planet can claim such a concentration of talent, power, wealth, and, thanks to its rash of drop-dead gorgeous architecture from the mid- to late 20th century, good taste. It’s Old Hollywood glamour at its finest and freshest. Historically snubbed by more grandiose and established corners of Beverly Hills and Bel Air, the leafy realm—originally a sprawling estate owned by members of the Doheny oil dynasty—has more recently earned stable recognition for being an architectural treasure. Trousdale Estates (Regan Arts, $75), a new coffee-table tome by producer and historian Steven M. Price, who chronicles in its pages the area’s famous residents, historical milestones, and society gossip. Not to mention its cache of images revealing the 410-acre neighborhood’s homes designed by luminaries such as Lloyd Wright (son of Frank Lloyd Wright), Wallace Neff, Buff & Hensman, and Cliff May, among many others. As architect Brad Dunning writes in the book’s foreword, “But most of all it’s (cocktail) time to revel in a strange and extraordinary past, place, and era.”
This is an absolute must-own coffee table book for any midcentury modern enthusiast, especially if you live in Los Angeles. The price for this book has gotten way ridiculous even though its one of the more well-produced books in my collection so I would recommend waiting until the prices go down due to copies coming to market or it is decided that they will publish the second edition. Regardless, make sure you find a way to own this book, I was fortunate to have been at the right place at the right time and was able to purchase my copy on pre-order.
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The New Old by Jessica Liew located in Melbourne, Australia | The Hardt
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Accommodation: double story dwelling comprising formal living, library, cellar, study, casual living and dining, separate laundry, rumpus, 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and 3 car accommodation. 6-star energy rated: double glazed windows and skylights, double hung ceilings, double insulated stud walls, reverse brick veneer walls, underground water tank, hydronic slab heating, recycled bricks, custom double height pile wool carpet, regenerative hardwood timbers throughout. ‘Switchable’ spaces including a study turning into a guest bedroom (murphy bed); rumpus or second study on level 1; and studio or 3rd bedroom upstairs.
A courtyard sized to a car space for future additional parking requirement. Hidden storage and joinery throughout. Custom steel framed glass pivot doors replacing a conventional front door, the recessed floor mat is the only give away. Antique Chinese screen doors framing the fishpond corridor, mural by celebrated Melbourne street artists Ghostpatrol and Miso; retention of the original chain wire mesh tennis court fencing and tennis court roller; all rooms feature a garden, fishpond or courtyard aspect. Honesty: respect and transparency for all natural materials used – predominant palette comprising black concrete, white painted tumbled bricks and natural timber finish waiting to age with the house.
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Lucio Fontana Ambienti Spaziali: Architecture, Art, Environments Hardcover – August 7, 2012
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