Reflections of Water and Art is a
If you watch nature long enough, over the course of seasons, you’ll see a compelling drama unfold. It was that experience, of watching the woods of McLean, Virginia, change throughout the year as they tell a story, that inspired the owners of this home to open up their residence to the forest and bring the outdoors in. The ensuing result is a space that serves as a gathering spot for family and a showcase for their collection of art and furniture, all against an ever-changing arboreal backdrop just outside of Washington, D.C.
The renovation was spearheaded by one of the owners, Mariela Buendia-Corrochano, an award-winning interior designer specializing in corporate workplaces. As part of her effort to transform the 1970s-era home, Mariela addressed the flow and size of several rooms—particularly the dining and family rooms—to make it easier to entertain family and friends. She also created options for closing off the kitchen and the breakfast area so that caterers can work during the many parties that she and her husband host.
One of the home’s most striking elements is an homage to a long-gone feature: an indoor pool, which the couple’s kids enjoyed during their childhood. A reminiscence of the pool now exists in the form of a parametrically designed ceiling feature that evokes rippling water, as does the carpet pattern and color.
However, it’s the emphasis on how the home connects to nature that’s the real focus of the renovation. With the residence backing up to the woods and offering views of Pimmit Run—a stream that connects to the Potomac River—Mariela decided to open up the house to the forest and bring the outdoors in through the addition of new windows and the opening of large glass doors. To complement this aspect, she designed the rest of the home to serve as a blank canvas for a collection of art and furniture from around the world.
The result, as this piece will show in detail, is a unique experience for the family, a connection to nature, and an expression of a forward-thinking humanism.
Photography by Devon Banks