Casagrande Laboratory decided against building a stout, heavy structure when they conceived of the Chen House in Taiwan. Even though the northern mountainous territory of the country is subject to raging typhoons, blistering heat and even earthquakes, the designers opted for a slight wooden construction lifted off the ground that allows this simple but attractive farmhouse to work in gentle harmony with the elements - like a tree that bends with the wind.
Flood waters escape underneath the mahogany home, which is lifted off the ground, while the brick chimney along with the bathroom and kitchen area gives the otherwise lightweight home grounding and stability (though we wonder how the brick will hold up in an earthquake). During hot summers, the bioclimatic design (including open slatted walls that makes the interior and exterior of the program virtually indistinguishable from one another) circulates a cool breeze that comes off the nearby Datun River.
During the wintertime, the striking brick fireplace provides warmth and can be used to brew tea. With a footprint of just 62.5 square meters, the Chen House is little more than a functional shelter for this small farming family, but that’s all they wanted. And it looks enormously comfortable to us.
Photos via AdDa