This House in Seeheim, Germany, is located in a lush, green, residential area developed around 1900 and its prominent hillside position commands impressive, distant views of the Rhine valley. The archetypal form of the gabled house, defined by the development plan, was taken up thematically as a monolithic form that advances beyond the edge of the slope, yet remains in equilibrium.
Contrasting views to the outside have been concentrated and staged with just four large openings across the corners biting into the monolithic form. Vertical ‘cut-out’ spaces, with full roof glazing over the dining area and stairs, connect the lower and upper floors. The panoramic openings were made as big as possible in order to do justice to the magnificent views - an essential quality of the property.
A central prerequisite of the design was creation of a homogenous appearance for both roof and external wall surfaces. Cladding all these surfaces in Aurubis’ Nordic Brown™ copper made it possible to realise this monolithic character in the form of an abstract, sharp-edged geometric body, while providing a weather-proof skin. The roof and outer wall surfaces are clad with large, pre-oxidised copper panels, contrasting with the white internal surfaces.
Detailing is handled with particular care to ensure that junctions and transitions are absolutely flush, while maintaining ventilation across the entire back surface area. The sharply defined white ‘cuts’ into the copper-clad mass form a fluid transition from outside to inside. Long-term performance was also an important driver of material choice and copper as a durable, natural material, contributes to the sustainability of the house.
This project was COMMENDED in the 2011 European Copper in Architecture Awards.