We're loving... the calm serenity of this architecture: a Japanese aesthetic that celebrates warm minimalism.
This home in California was designed by Sebastian Mariscal Studio. I think you'll agree that the architect is as gifted with words as he is with architecture. This is what he had to say about the project:
"The song of a sparrow floats in the air among the white blossoms of a crape myrtle forest. Here a path set in concrete seductively leads to an imposing black wall with a peculiar presence. There are no windows and no reference to any grand entrance. Rather, the glimmering surface of this burnt cedar wall is able to reflect daylight in tones ranging from a radiant silver to the deepest black.
A door opens to the discovery of an exterior space. The ground is sunken below the entrance level to contain a pond teeming with lilies, lotuses, and koi. There is a bridge to an enclosed space beyond, but the lack of railings initiates an awareness of the surroundings. The sound of gurgling water slows one’s attention to nature’s pace as the swimming koi create a dance of color below one’s feet. The lilies here are also aware of their space, as they open and close according to the presence of each day’s sunlight.
The enclosure beyond, also crafted in burnt cedar, creates a pause for the space that lies within. The sliding door reveals the Genkan where one removes one’s shoes and enters the main living space. This is a great terrace, as if suspended in perpetual penumbra, bordered by the murmuring pond before it and a smooth pebble garden with a plum forest beyond.
The subtle ripples in the garden are raked by the inhabitants. As with the sound of water, the soothing pebbles slowly raked create an awareness of the value of introspection. Above the main living terrace, a bedroom extends onto the roof garden, in an effort to connect with the landscape on every possible plane. A subtle, yet deep-rooted relationship with nature is made evident at Wabi, as the individual is removed from an exterior context and is allowed to exist in an environment of silence, reflection, and peace."