Text description provided by the architects. The object of this project is a small estate in the rural interior of the county of Barcelos, in the north of Portugal, where there was a farmer’s house and a sequeiro (a vernacular architectural structure used to dry and store cereals). The facade, almost without windows, describes a long curve following the shape of the street, which closes over the interior of the property, like a rolled-up cat. After being numbered and disassembled, the elements of the existing stone masonry were recombined, creating the geometry of a new elevation, facing the garden. Behind this puzzle of built memory, a secondary glazed facade was conceived, privileging the connection with the natural landscape.
The private and service areas are facing east, while the social area, facing south, proposes the free and exploratory use of a succession of mezzanines. At the northern end of the house, a suspended body – the painting studio – swings beyond the old stones of the primitive structure, challenging the surrounding landscape.
The house faces the street like a blank canvas, laconic and abstract, returning the shadows of the neighboring buildings.
I asked the owners, with whom a strong dialectical relationship had been established during the process: “what name would you give to your house?”. Their answer honors one of the trees that, without leaving the garden, enters the “Persimmon tree house” every day.