Picture an Irish country house nestled in the gently rolling hills of the County Cork. The client, a neurologist and psychiatrist, wanted to extend the house to include new living quarters and a master bedroom.
Architect:& Markus Schietsch Architekten GmbH Location: Inchigeelagh, County Cork, Ireland Year: 2014 Construction Management: Kevin Gartland Architects, Cork Structural Engineer: Fourem Consulting Engineers, Cork Technical Services: Sean O‘Leary, Ballingeary Photography: Andreas Buschmann
From the architect: In addition to the spatial extension, the new master bedroom is designed both to rest elevated on the neighboring hillside to get the best view of the wild-romantic Irish landscape, as well as to embed the house even stronger into the surrounding area.
The new extension now connects directly to the existing building and stretches to the northerly hillside. At the foot of the small hill the house is bent vertically upwards. The new space uses the shape of the existing building as a springboard and develops it further into an expressive sculpture. This evolution results in intriguing spatial situations and relationships: The alternating legibility between classic house and expressive sculpture results in a harmonic yet iconographic building ensemble. The new relationships between the surrounding landscape and the generous flowing space enrich the living experience and contrast with the existing cottage.
In the interior the distinctive bend of the existing cottage roof is mirrored in a new undulating spatial layer. The curved stair elements connect the living area on the ground floor with the elevated master bedroom up on the hillside. Underneath partially sunken into the earth the bathroom is designed as a ‘color-space’ contrasting the green of the Irish landscape. A generous opening connects the existing house and the new extension.
The house is constructed as a timber structure. Reminiscent of boat building techniques, a wooden rib-structure was erected onto which multiple layers of plywood were applied. In order to emphasize the sculptural quality the timber structure was covered with a slate grey liquid plastic coating. In the interior, the materiality is consciously reduced as to experience the changeable light atmospheres on the white curved surfaces and the delicate line composition of the house.