Crook | Cup | Bow | Twist Nicasio, CA Crook | Cup | Bow | Twist (categories of lumber deformation) refer to the latent potential energy of all natural systems towards movement.

The proposal first analyzes the site as a series of existing flows or “routes” across the landscape. The negotiation of both constructed and natural systems establishes the logic of the site plan and the orientation and organization of the new home. Conceptually, the project becomes a highly choreographed knot at the center of these routes, drawing strands in, engaging them with others, and propelling them back out again. The project’s intent is to capture and harness the physical and ephemeral sense of these latent natural movements as a way to promote in the architecture the wanderlust the surrounding landscape inspires. At heart, the client’s initial family agenda--a home as antidote to the city and basecamp for exploration--establishes the ethos and design objectives of the work.
Awards and Publications
  • Unbuilt Architecture Honor Award, American Institute of Architects San Francisco, 2010
  • Faculty Design Award, Honorable Mention Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture, 2010
  • American Architecture Award, Shortlisted The Chicago Athenaeum, 2010
  • Unbuilt Architecture and Design Award, Boston Society of Architects, 2009


Contractor
  • Hammond Fine Homes

Photography
  • Bruce Damonte

Construction Photography
  • Eddy Joaquim





Hydeaway House Sonoma, CA The design for this 2,000 square foot home adjacent to a working vineyard in Sonoma begins with a simple, one-story rectangular floor plan, not unlike any number of recent pre-fabricated prototypes for low cost, sustainable single-family homes. But then, the shape of the house begins to morph with the push and pull of the surrounding environment. The simple rectangular box folds in two to embrace the open 1-acre site. Walls skew under the rectangular roof to focus on near and distant views. This then creates the tapering roof overhangs that strategically protect the private spaces from the harshest of the summer sun. In the end, the design retains the benefits of a simple plan with streamlined construction, and the economical and sustainable use of materials. Yet with just a few subtle shifts in the plan, we create a home engaged with its surroundings and far more able to take advantage of the best its site has to offer -- qualities often lacking in the simple box. Stay Here »
Awards and Publications
  • AIA Merit Award for Residential Architecture, Fall, 2013
  • New York Times Home Section, September 19, 2013
  • "The Architect Is In", Remodelista, March 30, 2013
Contractor
  • Eames Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman

Construction Photography
  • Eddy Joaquim



Sonoma Pool House Sonoma, CA This wine country pool house|garden folly is carefully scaled to both anchor the landscape yet tread lightly upon it. A few simple moves create a sculptural object in the garden that captures shadows in subtly changing ways over the course of the day.
 
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Contractor
  • Eames Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Castenada Residence San Francisco, CA This full remodel of a 3,200 sq ft home in San Francisco’s Forest Hills neighborhood worked within the home’s existing split level organization, but radically expanded the sense of openness and movement through the space. The jewel of the new top floor master suite is a minimalist bathroom surrounded by glass and filled with light. The most private space becomes the most prominent element from the street below.
 
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Contractor
  • Gleason & Tankard

Photography
  • Aaron Leitz



Eagle Rock Residence Mill Valley, CA We are under construction! Come back soon to see the progress.
 
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Contractor
  • MJH Construction Management

Photography
  • SaA



Rutledge Street Residence San Francisco, CA With little to work with but the potential for wonderful light and views, we have given this 1950's Bernal Heights residence an expansive feel that belies its limited square footage. Key to our design is a new staircase (strategically placed to accommodate a future third floor addition), which transforms the entryway and upper level. We collaborated with Andre Caradec of S/U/M Architecture on the design and fabrication of the unique guardrail. The pattern is the result of many considerations: a desire for the perforations to modulate relative to eye level while ascending and descending the stair, the need for a lightweight and self-supporting structure, and, as always, the complex dynamic between design intent, constructability and cost.
 
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Photography
  • Matthew Millman

Contractor
  • building Lab inc.



Nineteenth Street Residence San Francisco, CA The owner’s buoyant personality, own design work and extensive art collection inspire the renovation and addition to this Potrero Hill home. Here, we worked specifically to “curate” the natural light — using it to draw people up and through the space, to focus attention on the collection of art objects, and to propel them back out to panoramic views of the city beyond. As in all of our work, we were strategic in the use of resources, maintaining the original character of the front of the home, while subtly coaxing more character out of materials, such as simple exterior siding, at the rear.
Awards and Publications
  • "Growing Room", Residential Building Magazine, Project of the Month, April 2013
  • "A Stepped Up Remodel", San Francisco Chronicle, February 2012
Contractor
  • Forsythe Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Buena Vista Residence San Francisco, CA Typical of many San Francisco Victorians, this home's kitchen had evolved out of an enclosed porch and rear-yard service space. It was undersized and isolated from the life of the current house. Our work updates this ad hoc space, bringing it into the natural flow of the rest of the structure, and creating a stronger, more modern relationship to the rear yard. The centerpiece of the new light-filled space is a custom island / drop-leaf table that converts from a casual family dining area to an ample workspace for the children's art projects, or seating for twelve. Open shelving and a series of custom ledges for the family's seasonal canning efforts intensify the casual, working feel to the kitchen, which is admittedly modern, yet somehow appropriate to the essence of the home.
Awards and Publications
  • Dwell Magazine, 100 Kitchens We Love, May 2011
  • 7x7 Magazine, October 2009
  • Residential Architect, June 2009
  • San Francisco Chronicle, February 2009


Contractor
  • Gillespie Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Overlook Residence and Guest House Los Gatos, CA This project, currently under construction, includes an extensive remodel and addition to an existing modern residence high above Silicon Valley, as well as a new secondary dwelling nestled into a forested slope below the main house. Both designs are inspired by dominant images from the site: boulders, bark, and leaves. The massing of the main house addition references the solidity of the far-off hills below. Perforated-metal solar screens take their gestural shape from the conflicting push and pull of the desire for view versus the desire for shading on the highly exposed site. The new home below immerses inhabitants in the cover of the trees and appears to launch from the hill off a series of cantilevered columns over the steep site.
 
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Contractor
  • MD Construction



Caselli Avenue Residence San Francisco, CA The inspiration for the remodel of this San Francisco Victorian came from an unlikely source – the owner's modern-day cabinet of curiosities, brimming with jars filled with preserved aquatic body-parts and specimens. Through a series of relatively subtle moves, this room now becomes the heart of the home, with glimpses into the remarkable collection a constant presence from every space. A partially translucent glass wall and shelving system protects the collection and divides the owner's study from the adjacent family room. The pattern on the glass (derived from the genetic code of a harbor seal) allows the owner and his specimens to peek out from the office – and allows his young children an occasional peek in.
Awards and Publications
  • Home Tours, American Institute of Architects San Francisco, 2010

California Home + Design, March 2009
  • San Francisco Chronicle, February 2009


Contractor
  • Gelling & Judd Inc.

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Presidio Residence San Francisco, CA The kitchen and powder room of this extensively remodeled home were somehow always left behind, relics of a different –and unflattering—era. Our work seamlessly updates these spaces and integrates them into the modern, clean aesthetic of the rest of the home. Since the owners are enthusiastic art collectors, the galley kitchen is designed with large expanses of open walls, as a gallery waiting to be curated.
 
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Contractor
  • Alderson Construction

Photography
  • Eddy Joaquim



Wisconsin Street Residence San Francisco, CA This project challenges the traditional idea of context in one of San Francisco's most rapidly evolving neighborhoods. The form of the addition takes its cues from the varied streetscape and brings the existing structure into a stronger compositional dialogue with its neighbors. The new story is set back from the street, balancing its scale and proportion with the lower floors. The intimate spaces of the original home are preserved but open up dramatically when ascending the new stair to the master bedroom suite.
Awards and Publications
  • Achievement Award in Architecture, California Home + Design, 2008
  • Dwell Magazine, April 2007
  • Kitchen Style & Bath, November 2006
  • Home Tours, American Institute of Architects San Francisco, 2005



Contractor
  • Mark Gillispie

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Ross Circle Residence Oakland, CA This project transforms a dark master bedroom suite in a California Mission-style home, combining the original bedroom, small bathroom and closets into a single, light-filled space. Once stripped to its exterior walls, we inserted a single freestanding cabinetry piece back into the center of the open space, which organizes movement around the room. This mahogany "box" creates a headboard for the bed on one side, anchors the vanity for the bath on the other, and conceals a walk-in closet and powder room inside. While the detailing is not traditional, we preserved the traditional feel of the home through a warm and rich material palette and the re-conception of the space as a garden room.
Awards and Publications
  • Residential Architect, June 2009
  • San Francisco Chronicle, February 2009

 
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Contractor
  • Laurence Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Rhode Island Street Residence San Francisco, CA This house addition on a typical San Francisco lot doubles the size of the existing non-descript 1954 "Contractor's Special". Our strategy carves out a series of strongly contained, yet open, outdoor rooms that carefully balance between engaging the site's expansive urban views and maintaining a distinctly private domestic realm. The initial move is to carve a new small internal outdoor courtyard and entry out of one of the existing bedrooms, bringing light into the center of the new scheme. The rear façade and third floor roof decks build on this strategy of carving voids out of a solid mass—perhaps an apt image of the way many urbanites create their private homes within the density of the city.
Awards and Publications
  • San Francisco Chronicle, February 2009
  • Kitchens: A Sunset Design Guide, 2008
  • California Home and Design, October 2007
  • Home Tours, American Institute of Architects San Francisco, 2007

 
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Contractor (finish phase)
  • Gillespie Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Dolores Street Residence San Francisco, CA This 7,000 square foot renovation and addition maintains the graciousness and carefully-proportioned spaces of the historic 1907 home. The new construction includes a kitchen and family living area, a master bedroom suite, and a fourth floor dormer expansion. The subtle palette of materials, extensive built-in cabinetry, and careful integration of modern detailing and design, together create a fresh interpretation of the original design.
Awards and Publications
  • Kitchens: A Sunset Design Guide, 2008
  • Western Interiors, May 2007

 
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Contractor
  • Mattarozzi and Pelsinger Construction

Photography
  • Matthew Millman



Martha Road Residence Orinda, CA The most noteworthy quality of this suburban home was its dramatic site overlooking a wide- open hillside. The interior spaces, however, did little to engage with this expansive view. Our project corrects these deficits, lifting the height of the space over the kitchen and dining rooms and lining the rear facade with a series of 9' high doors, opening to the deck and the hillside beyond.
 
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Contractor
  • Laurence Construction

Photography
  • SaA



A Shed San Francisco, CA A shed is often a distracting afterthought — an eyesore. This project rethinks this typical wood frame structure in order to elevate it beyond simple utility. Here, the translucent form sits at the edge of the site acting as a glowing lantern and garden folly, softly illuminating the yard. The inflected shape guides rainwater from the shed's gently pinched roof, delivering it to a small reflecting pool beneath.
Awards and Publications
  • Zyzzyva, Fall 2007

 
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A Bath San Francisco, CA This small, but challenging, bathroom remodel in an existing Victorian home gained a sense of luxury and spaciousness through the insertion of a dramatic skylit volume over the shower. The addition of this natural light from above allowed us to highlight the material textures of the space and how they change over the course of the day.
 
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Contractor
  • Moroso Construction

Photography
  • Eddy Joaquim



A Rail San Francisco, CA - In collaboration with Andre Caradec of S/U/M and Andrew Kudless of MATSYS Beginning with an agenda to direct and control perception as a viewer ascends and descends through the space (and informed by the client's fascination with traditional patterned and woven forms) we proposed a highly crafted piece, animated through movement and view. Through the collaboration with S/U/M and MATSYS (California College of the Arts colleagues), we were able to provide our client with a series of increasingly refined digital and analogue prototypes.
 
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Lichen House Glen Ellen, CA This new 3,500 SF home, guest house and garage is nestled among the surrounding oaks in the hills above Glen Ellen. The mature trees' free-ranging branches support veils of draping lichen that filter sunlight, catch moisture in the air, and act as bellwethers for the environmental health of this unique micro-climate. The precise symbiotic relationship between species of Lichen and their host environment serves as inspiration for an architecture specifically tailored to its site, both as a response to it and an expansion of its best attributes. Construction scheduled for 2015.
 
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Double-A House Sonoma, CA This modest 2,000 SF home in the hills above the Sonoma Valley continues our interest in developing prototypes for highly site-responsive, environmentally sensitive and affordable homes. Here, the two private wings wrap around to create a protected open-air courtyard at the center of the form. This courtyard links the entry to the living space and the cantilevered deck and views beyond. Construction summer, 2014.
 
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Plum Ranch Retreat Santa Rosa, CA This expansive 60 acre site in the hills of Santa Rosa is currently undergoing a series of upgrades. A farmhouse, main house, barn, observation tower, and zip-line are included in the master plan. Stay tuned for updates!
 
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