The notion of conceptual architecture is a contentious one: sometimes an architect takes a home design concept too far and the results are a kind of a literalist too-easy-to-understand aesthetic. At other times, though, a concept can be an functional and organizing principle around which an entire house is designed.


Inspired by unstable regional topography, this house by KWK Architects appears to wind up from the ground, a warm wooden band corkscrewing skyward through an otherwise conventional-looking modernist white home.


Both inside and out, exposed steel frames the border between this intrusive band and the surrounding structure in order to clearly differentiate spaces for circulation and occupation and establish another layer of visual hierarchy.


The language of white-and-wood continues throughout the house, with wooden accents and surfaces defining warm and comfortable spaces within white volumes.


More than merely an aesthetic affectation, the introduction of this simple band provides circulation and indicates a heierarchy of uses throughout this entire modern home design.