Leaf House with Concrete Shade Canopies
On the coast of India, the hot sun is not always welcome, but a cool breeze can be heavenly. This home uses organic leaf-like shapes to supply contiguous cover for disparate rooms around a common outdoor space.
Steel supports hold up the overhanging concrete, and glass infill selectively closes off interior spaces, providing a sense of openness throughout the multi-volume home.
Designed by Mumbai firm SJK Architects, the intervention carefully works with the exiting site conditions and greenery, twisting and turning to accommodate trees already in place.
Pools, decks and terraces wind throughout the property, creating more private retreat areas as well as public gathering zones. Some leaves overlap, while others sit off the to the site, a whimsical-seeming smattering that hides careful site planning.
“Our project – to create a family home of 650sqm on a 1.3 acre plot of land at the base of the hills, but far removed from the sea. Land lush with the native coconut, mango and neem trees, and peers up at the sunrise on the eastern hills above it. It was a beautiful property – we wanted to include the hills and trees and the gentle winds – the leaves strewn over the earth were the perfect cue. The form of the leaf – gentle but sloping was perfect and our very first sight of the plot yielded a site plan made of dried leaves. The Client enjoyed the idea of pods – overlapping but distinct, to house each part of the home, and the journey between pods, to be sculpted open space encompassing native trees.”
“The house began as an exploration of natural forms, built and designed to sit in nature. It encountered the manmade constructs of doors, windows and domestic gizmos – the orthogonal products of an industrial economy. Navigating and refining this encounter, into a serene and natural environment for a family to live in complete comfort, embedded in nature, was the challenge of this project.”