Single Family Bungalow by Skyward Inc
“This house in Nanded, Maharashtra ,designed for an affluent Doctor family by Ar sehool kapashi design partner skywardinc architects, blends modern Western aesthetics with Indian taste and sensibilities. The family had requested a modern home that would facilitate a contemporary lifestyle whilst enabling their observance of the traditional values of Vastu, a traditional Hindu system of architecture and design based on directional alignments.
The spaces in this family home were crafted like a garment, woven around the needs and desires of its inhabitants. The home aspired to be deeply rooted, connected to the surrounding environment.
Skywards idea was to construct the house as a single monolithic concrete structure. The woven steel reinforcement and raw timber formwork into which the concrete was cast have imprinted the process of building into its surfaces, with rugged lines in the concrete and hints of steel reinforcement in the ceilings. As the early morning sun casts shadows across the textured horizontal wooden bands , the memory of the construction process itself marks the passing of time and reminds the family of the effort, desire, and realization of their dream.
The spaces within and around the house were designed for each family member to enjoy their own privacy and commune with nature, as well as spaces where they could meaningfully come together in the creation and continuation of family rituals around meals, greetings, and homecomings. The house is articulated around a square geometry in plan, but the spatial arrangement within this straightforward framework is a complex interplay of large and deep spaces and connections that stretch across the length of the house in various directions. These elongated rooms draw the eye across them, at times relating to the views of the garden, across extended windows that skirt the skyline and horizon or to focus the exaggerated perspectives on select elements within a room. These visual connections within the rooms as well as from space to space be it the decorative metal work at the entrance , or the metal grill at the terrace level or the wooden trellis between the master bed and the sit out help to unite the inhabitants and make them aware of each other’s movements within the house as well as strongly link the house to its surrounding environment.
The living and dining rooms are connected in one continuous space with a central open skylight for natural light to pour in . Along the length of the skylight , a low bay window ledge cast into the folds of the wall and a long horizontal window opening provide an intimate and direct connection to the landscape, as well as casual seating that can comfortably accommodate one or many people. Similarly, the expansive kitchen island that extends across the tall and grand kitchen runs parallel to a broad view of the rear garden and makes the kitchen a bright and pleasant room that is just as much a social space as a working area.
With this architectural language of deep spaces and extensive windows, dramatic linear vistas of the gardens that surround the house are framed. The views to the greenery provide a sense of serenity and reflection to the inhabitants and ground them to their environment. The culmination of these views occurs in the covered terrace that runs across the front façade of the top storey with a singular horizontal opening across its frontage. This broad window takes in a spectacular and uninterrupted view of the suburban skyline beyond and is adorned with a lush green Landscape screen.
Although the house was designed as an integrated experience of the architecture, interior and landscape design, each discipline has its unique expression and concept.
The design objective was to integrate landscaping into many aspects of daily life to foster awareness of the environment and enhance the sense of well-being through a deep connection to nature.
The design process included extensive visits to nurseries, botanical gardens and working sessions with the landscape builder.
The placement of plants and water features to enhance awareness of the wind, clouds sky. Each of the landscape areas in the house has a direct relationship to a space extensively used on a daily basis.
The water cascade was placed at the front boundary where the sight and sound of a glistening water wall creates a separation from the outside when approaching the cool quiet entrance.
Living Areas with high ceilings and an eye level bay window are encircled by flowering shrubs along the perimeter, the abundant garden becomes the dominant element of the room at night where lighting emphasizes the long leaves and the shadows create there own drama.
An Edible Kitchen Garden including fruit trees and herbs was introduced to draw out the cook to care for, be inspired by and cultivate food.”
Photos courtesy of Skyward Inc