Famous Tree Residence

Sisters, Oregon
2008

The designers intention was to form this 2200 square-foot residence in the sage/bitterbrush/juniper desert so that it emotionally connected the owners to both the broad and proximate landscape while making the building merely a non-object and a foil to reveal the environment. To this end, the concrete walls were colored to match the shade of the exposed soils and the whole structure was kept low to keep it from being visible in the ten to 15-foot native flora.

The exact placement of the building on a canyon was intended to take advantage of a semi-circular “blow-out” in an otherwise vertical cliff face. Wrapping the building around this feature provided both distant views of the mountains and more intimate views of the canyon bottom below. The exact angles of the components were generated by specific views of poignant trees or distant mountain landmarks.

The wooden part of the structure was designed to visually reveal the strong lateral absorption loads that exist in the volcanic zone.

The whole of this wooden structure was encased in glass to protect it from the elements and display the fabrication.