Geometry in Black / Yiacouvakis Hamelin architectes

© Francis Pelletier
© Francis Pelletier

Architects: YH2_Yiacouvakis Hamelin architectes
Location: Saint-Hyppolite, Québec, Canada
Design team: Benoit Boivin, Marie-Claude Hamelin, Loukas Yiacouvakis
Client: Jean Mathieu
Builder: Martin Lachance
Project area: 1,850 pi.ca.
Project year: 2008-2009
Photographs: Francis Pelletier & Loukas Yiacouvakis

site plan
site plan

In the Laurentians, a dense forest on a slight hill, down-turns into the expansion of a small river. Through the trees, the body of a black building is divided into three blocks linked by glass passageways. Three blocks of a home, mid-level from each other, are all in direct contact with the earth. Three blocks of proper identity, offering intimacy between each and open to nature:

  • An entry block, open on two levels and includes the adolescents quarters and family room
  • A daytime block, central space, friendly, opens onto the terrace
  • A private block, owners suite, isolated from the rest of the home
ground floor plan
ground floor plan

On the north side of the house, a large section of bent corten connects the blocks together while defining a series of outdoor settings, always against the light. The chiaroscuro of the forest while both inside and outside the home, the black / white / orange / rust / bark / shadow / light / transparency / opacity.

Architecture of meeting and superposition of different geometrical shapes without stable parallel lines, like the landscape that surrounds it. Fragmented architecture where the geometric part of large oblique lines still allows a large formal union. Partly based in the geometric basis of the concept which dictates each project component, a sort of unwritten contract between architect and client. The modification of each element having a direct influence on the others, we can’t enlarge or reduce a block in height and plan without enlarging or reducing other areas of the house.

© Loukas Yiacouvakis
© Loukas Yiacouvakis

This geometry which is both fragmented and linear makes the project a strong spatial experience, allowing direct and variable contact with the landscape. It is this angular part, made of dark and raw materials that unites the house to nature, like a rock that emerges from the ground. A forgotten shipwreck at the heart of the forest.

Cite: "Geometry in Black / Yiacouvakis Hamelin architectes" 23 Oct 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 20 Sep 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=38641>

23 comments

  1. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    I’m not sure but… I think the section is wrong. Check out the stairs on the right. Confusing, maybe there are more stairs that doesn’t appear on the plant and that’s why I’m confused..

  2. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Hideous spaces? People here always try to depreciate nice projects. You should think a little bit outside the box, that project is a superb example of a strong concept and elegant materials, and yet simple lines and clear distribution of the rooms

    • Thumb up Thumb down 0

      i agree,
      its a very interesting planning. 3 distinct spaces connected by the transitional stairs. i like the fact that the linearity is broken down into 3 blocks, whereby each block can be read as its own entity within nature and 4 sides of each fragment is exposed to the natural surroundings, yet the corten steel brings it all together. the materiality also enhances that connection with nature… delightful….

  3. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    J’adore ce projet, bravo à toute l’équipe. Il y a une fluidité remarcable entre les trois blocs. De plus, il y a beaucoup d’angle dans les formes de cette résidence, mais ils semblent tous s’intégrés naturellement.

    J’aime aussi voir cette masse d’acier cortène s’intégrer à la forêt.

  4. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    doesn’t photograph real well. there is probably (hopefully?) much more to it than the images convey. i feel like Francis Pelletier’s photos are trying to get too cute with the forms, and unsuccessfully, shooting from the laying-in-the-front-yard-drunk angle. just shoot the space & show the intent. don’t make fine art out of trapezoids from angles no one can see.

  5. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    totally agree with Foster and john avlakiotis… the plan is simple and clear, and the materials perfectly match the site… congrats…

  6. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    i like lines of the building which are enough to make impression. besides, i also agree with materials that this architect used; they show elegant and integration with landscape around

  7. Thumb up Thumb down 0

    Do you need to be a millionaire to have a house like this? How much does it cost to have a architect design this type of house?

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