This home plans is architecture that is simultaneously detached from and rooted in the landscape. While its red-painted wood cladding is clearly a nod to the dairy barns that dot neighboring farms, the attenuated forms – elongated by the thin steel members of cantilevered outdoor balconies – and the irregularly patterned windows make it a hybrid of the known and the invented. Five miles up a steep, sporadically paved road, the ingeniously contorted house looks out on an unbroken sweep of terrain.
On a hilltop site in a remote section of the Catskill Mountains, NY, United States the “Y” House ascends the hill, splitting to form two arms, ending in balconies. The “Y” cuts a slice of sky and draws the sun into the heart of the house. Like a found forked stick, the Y makes a primitive mark on a vast site. Designed by Steven Holl Architects, the geometry contains a sectional flip of public/private and day/night with bedrooms below and living above. Maximum wall hanging space to accommodate a contemporary art collection is balanced with windows framing unique views. Deep balconies facing nearly due south act as passive solar devices allowing the winter sun to penetrate the interiors while excluding the hot summer sun. Steel framing and roof are iron-oxide red, siding is stained cedar while interiors are white with ash floors.
While its red-painted wood cladding is clearly a nod to the dairy barns that dot neighboring farms, the attenuated forms – elongated by the thin steel members of cantilevered outdoor balconies – and the irregularly patterned windows make it a hybrid of the known and the invented’.
CREDITS: Steven Holl Architects (design architect), Erik Fenstad Langdalen (project architect), Annette Goderbauer, Yoh Hanaoka, Bradford Kelley, Justin Korhammer, Jennifer Lee, Chris McVoy (project team), Peter Liaunig (local architect), Robert Silman Associates (structural engineer), L’Observatoire International (lighting consultant), Dick Dougherty (general contractor), Face Design (furniture)