House for a musician and scholar. Lincolnshire.

Client: Private
Contract Value: £750,000
Scheme design. 2000

This house is a country retreat for a male couple - a musician and academic - and a place to live, work and entertain visitors who will sometimes stay for long periods. It provides settings for a wide spectrum of situations from everyday domestic to places of contemplation, study, entertainment and work. Within each of these the specific conditions of enclosure and orientation to the landscape are the points of departure. Set within the flat landscape of Lincolnshire the primary references are sky, earth and the horizon. The continuity between indoor and outdoor rooms allows seasonal change to transform the character of the main spaces.

The house is defined by two permanent marks in the landscape. The first a scraping away of the earth to define the footprint of the house, the second, the raising of a thick rubble wall to delineate the northern boundary of the dwelling enclosure. Against this a slender timber frame is constructed to give openings and views to the gardens and horizon to the south.

The guest accommodation is a separate building of more basic construction located to help protect the main house from winter prevailing winds.

Principal internal spaces are open and articulated through light and material as 'landscaped' settings. Study and reading niches occupy an enclosing thickness against the rubble wall and are oriented towards more primal spaces characterised by the use of rough stone and water.