Mad Park Residence / Vandeventer + Carlander Architects

© Ben Benschneider

Architects: Vandeventer + Carlander Architects
Location: Seattle, , USA
Structural Engineer: Swenson Say Faget
Landscape Architects: Samuel Williamson Associates
Lighting: dePelecyn Studio light & shadow
Energy Consultant: Ecotope
Contractor: Schilperoort & Brooks, Inc. General Contractors
Floor Area: 5,546 sq ft
Project Year: 2008
Photographs: Ben Benschneider

The site for this home is a steep slope corner lot in a prestigious neighborhood. Existing site conditions include neighbors to the west and north, a busy arterial below, and a residential street to the east. Though the existing residence was demolished, the previous daylight basement level and existing retaining walls established the datum for the new house.

The program required accommodating a family of six while serving as a platform for entertaining and displaying a growing collection of contemporary art. This dual need of accommodating family and art led to the concept of “served” and “service” zones as the organizational tool for the home’s design. Zoning of functions also permit art and children to live side by side, to be enriched by each other.

main floor plan

The home is comprised of four distinct elements: a glass enclosed main floor living area, a wood wrapped upper bedroom level, a steel sheathed “service” volume to the rear, and a cantilevered, stucco clad office. Fundamental to the concept of the house is a linear, light filled gallery that extends the length of the house. This space separates the “served” from “service” functions on all floors, both in plan and section.

© Ben Benschneider

The glass enclosed living area is developed as an open, loft space. Containing traditional entry, living, dining, and family room functions, this space open to patios and gardens on three fully glazed sides. The living area appears as a “void” juxtaposed against the mass of the other volumes.

Private, bedroom areas are defined by the Alaskan Yellow Cedar clad volume above the living area. Three glass bridges, crossing through the linear gallery, give access to the five bedrooms. The bridges and upper hallway provide multiple views of art displayed in the gallery space.


The “service” volume is a two-story enclosure housing the every-day needs of the family: specifically kitchen, mud room, bathrooms, closets, stair, and laundry. Wrapped in rusting steel sheets, the solid nature of the enclosure creates the backdrop to the open nature of the public areas.

The final element, the cantilevered office serves as a sculptural counterpoint to an otherwise rational plan.

© Ben Benschneider

Products in this project

Construction materials, Semi-finished materials: DuPont

  • Countertops: Solid Surfacing, Corian by DuPont

Facades: Alaskan Yellow Cedar Bear Creek Lumber, Weathered Steel

  • Wood Siding by Alaskan Yellow Cedar Bear Creek Lumber
  • Metal Siding by Weathered Steel

Floor: Padouk, Ann Sacks, Bamboo, Artisan Finishes

  • First Floor Wood Flooring: Padouk by Padouk
  • Bathroom Tile Flooring: Limestone Tile, Ann Sacks Tile by Ann Sacks
  • Second Floor Wood Flooring: Bamboo by Bamboo
  • Cementitious Flooring: Milestone by Artisan Finishes

Joinery: Unison Windows, Kawneer North America

  • Wood Windows: Painted Douglas Fir by Unison Windows
  • Aluminum Metal Doors and Windows by Kawneer North America

Structures: Maple Peteís Cabinet Shop

  • Cabinets: Padouk, Maple Peteís Cabinet Shop by Maple Peteís Cabinet Shop

Walls: Artisan Finishes, Ann Sacks

  • Cementitious Wall Coating: Milestone by Artisan Finishes
  • Bathroom Wall Tile: Glass, Ann Sacks by Ann Sacks
Cite: "Mad Park Residence / Vandeventer + Carlander Architects" 14 May 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 23 May 2015. <>
  • Carl

    I wonder what neighborhood it is in?

  • up_today_arch

    wood and stained steel too many matireals for one house. every of them has it’s own idea and ones should not mix them. generally… one material makes idea stronger…

    • Regan

      One material would potentially deaden the idea(s) here. Not every great piece of architecture is made up of one great idea! The 2 main elements here read differently, as they should. Some feel a palette of more than THREE materials can be too much, generally speaking.

  • GRock

    That statue of a female in the gallery is terrific! Maybe to be used as a deterrent for break-ins?

  • Barry Mac

    i really want to like this design but i just feels too commercial.

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  • Allan

    What a perfect architecture not for a family. I mean it resembles too much a museum or office or representative rooms. The guests are welcome, the residents not. The photographer is welcome :)
    Too cold, deconstructivism is wrong :)

  • Subway Tile Bathroom

    F*ckin? tremendous issues here. I?m very glad to look your post. Thank you so much and i’m taking a look ahead to touch you. Will you kindly drop me a mail?

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