Jovanovic House

Jovanovic House

Architect
Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects
Location
Brentwood, CA, United States | View Map
Project Year
2009
Category
Private Houses
Michael Weschler

Jovanovic House

Lorcan O’Herlihy Architects as Architects

Sitting on an aggressively sloping site, the Jovanovic Residence combines a progressive solution to an existing home with an addition. In a move to significantly reduce the budget and avoid wastefully leveling the house, the existing structure, its foundations, and retaining walls, were preserved. The old structure was treated as a found object to be cut away from and opened up.


Through the utilization of a continuous mesh wrap, various programmatic elements including a new guest suite, a modified master bedroom, exterior decking, and exterior facade, are synthesized together within a cohesive element. Usually used to shade vegetation and outdoor spaces from insects and bugs, recycled polypropylene-coated woven mesh was re-formulated to sustainably and programmatically cast a new form on the house. Separated from the existing stucco finish, the durable skin protects the house from solar heat gain.


Rather than following the existing volume directly, the skin reduces the geometries of the existing house into simpler shapes. The resultant forms create a powerful dialogue between the former and newer envelopes. Simultaneously a privacy, screening, guardrail, and shading device, the skin embraces the house to create new found relationships between indoor and outdoor, and public and private.


Exploiting the steep topography of the site, an inclined bank leads to a spacious entry foyer, formerly a carport. From here, a steel stair descends to the living spaces that extend linearly from a long hallway that links the home’s extreme ends. Pocketing glass sliders open the house to a balcony running the length of the house. A grand stadium stair descends along the rear of the home, connecting the more public areas of the house to a garden and pool area. Infused with natural light, the master suite opens to rooftop decks that reach out into the tree canopy.

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