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The home designed by Massimo Fiorido Associati and Sundaymorning in Marina di Castagneto Carducci is inspired by reflection on the impact of buildings on the natural landscape. This anonymous holiday home was built in the ’60s in a pine grove which had been planted when the once marshy coastline was reclaimed in the early 20th century, when it was given its present form characterised by a free alternation of closely packed maritime pine, myrtle and ilex trees.
Taking the place of the old building, the new architecture accompanies exploration of this free landscape, letting itself be penetrated by the vegetation, which “rises” through the pavement outside the home. While taking on the archetypal shape of the home with gabled roof, the volume is built on a single level, with a horizontal orientation following a stylised curve which ideally embraces the pine grove, offering beautiful views. The project adopts and restores the hues of the landscape, with application to the structure of a wall covering of striped travertine, in tiles arranged on the basis of a façade design which privileges the building?s horizontal orientation, underlining this direction with a pavement forming a little podium which raises the building from the earth and leads into the house.
A design philosophy similar to that of Giancarlo De Carlo, who came up with an urban plan in the late ’50s demonstrating his fervent belief that architecture must retain a close relationship with landscape.
Here, nature is so predominant that the building fits into it with the same expressive power on the exterior, while the interiors are characterised by refined, minimalist comfort, in which the white plaster welcomes the many different hues of the personal possessions accumulated over a lifetime.
The layout follows the way the house sits freely on the land, characterized by rooms which penetrate one another and encourage the inhabitants to use the space as a single fluid whole. The shapes and proportions of the windows are based on the dimensions of the rooms, ensuring constant natural light proportionate to the nature of the rooms. The perspective views between doors and windows guide the eye in exploration of the home, with the view of the outside as the constant vanishing point.
Only a few materials are used in the finishes in the home, as decorative cross-references between interior and exterior. The focus is on the stairway/bookshelf standing in the centre of the home: lit up by the big skylight at the top, it channels light into the foyer leading to the two main volumes of the home. The fulcrum of the private space, this staircase or bookshelf is as compact as a work of architecture in miniature.
Design: Massimo Fiorido Associati, Sundaymorning
Project leaders: Fabio Candido, Massimo Fiorido
Project team: Monica Bracci, Marco Sarri
Location: Marina di Castagneto Carducci, Livorno (Italy)
Structural design: Fabio Candido
Lighting design: Fabio Candido
Landscape design: Fabio Candido
Technical supervision: Fabio Candido
Total usable surface area: 135 m2
Lot size: 515 m2
Project start date: 2008
Completion of work: 2011
Ultra-light low emission double-glazed windows
Wooden roof covered with brick tiles (required by current Urban Development Plan)
Brick weight-bearing structure
Interior walls covered with plaster
Custom-designed varnished and oiled teak and varnished ebony furniture
Lighting by Kreon, Davide Groppi
Custom-designed kitchen made of beech wood varnished with open pores, countertop made of black Zimbabwe granite
Bathroom fittings: Quadro taps, custom-designed teak furnishings
Photo credits: ©Fabio Candido