Exposed and Always Under Construction Formerly the Santa Monica Museum of Art, wHY collaborated with…
Roof as Third Nature
This weekend house in Chiang Mai is designed for a couple living abroad but with a strong passion for the quality and style of life in Thailand. The house will eventually become their full-time residence. Having traveled the world extensively, the couple sought a house that had universal qualities of modern design but had strong fidelity to Chiang Mai in terms of its scale, space, and materiality.
Located on a river bank, the floor of the house floats a meter above the landscape as a safeguard against floods as seen in traditional houses. Large semi-covered outdoor deck spaces surrounded by gardens and courtyards accommodate the outdoor lifestyle common to the climate. The most visible element of a traditional Thai house, the roof has been re-imagined as not simply a ‘hat’ over the house, but the house itself, forming its walls as well in one formal gesture. The roof, clad in traditional Thai clay roof tiles, becomes a permeable ‘skin’ for the house, creating enclosed outdoor spaces and open indoor spaces.