Residential Design

Vol 1, 2018

A business-to-business magazine focused on the collaborative process and talented work of residential architects and custom homebuilders.

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Page 7 of 71

Game of Themes There's a reason why e ditors choose themes for each issue of their magazines. For our part at RD, we could simply publish beautiful houses each time and call it a day, but I think having a filter to run everything through helps put each house in perspective. As an editor, a theme gives me bearings on what to search for and directs me in what to winnow. If I still really like a project I've had to eliminate, I'll set it aside for a time and see if a new theme emerges for me to develop. The theme for this issue is private oasis, encapsulated perfectly in the cover photograph of Cutler Anderson's House on a Pond. The themes we pick are broad by intention, because their dynamism comes out of each point of exploration. As you page through the magazine, you'll find most of the features and even our back page follow the theme in direct ways, with large, artfully designed hous- es on ample parcels of land. It's pretty easy to have a private house when your neighbors are nowhere near you. But it's not impossible to conjure areas of privacy even on tight sites. One of our featured houses is hard by its neighbors on a busy beach. Yet, its talented architect managed to carve out zones of seclusion and engagement within its small enve- lope. On the roof deck, there's a sheltered hot tub, immersed in the ocean view but away from prying eyes. This is where the oasis part of our theme plays out. Indeed, an oasis can be something as simple as a bathtub, just out of earshot in a house full of noisy chil- dren. It doesn't take much to provide humans with a measure of escape from the worries of the world. As I write and edit each story, I find waves of our theme continue to wash over me. What about the idea of a private oasis within a private oasis? The Ravine Residence, which begins on page 34, is nearly 9,000 square feet. Its large, bridge-like great room spans a ra- vine, elevating occupants directly into the best sight lines. Curtain walls everywhere usher the lovely landscape throughout the house. But, guess where the owners' favorite spot is? A small covered deck that backs up to the trees. It's protected and private, but directly dialed into the sounds and sights of nature. Architect Jill Neubauer, whose firm we profile beginning on page 13, takes the idea of the small sheltered place even further. She designs beautiful new homes and renovations on Cape Cod in Massachusetts, and her projects certainly have many moments of prospect and refuge in their beautiful settings. But she likes to make the experience of the natural world and landscape even more immediate and primal. On her own property and for clients, she's designed something she calls a "glamp"—it's part tent, part cabin, and only lightly protected from the elements. Placed off in the woods or on some quiet corner of the property, it slows life down, redirecting it inward and outward at the same time. A private oasis, indeed. S. Claire Conroy Editor-in-Chief EDITOR'S NOTE

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