The Loureiro Street is filled with oaks and cork oaks with leafy treetops. The topography is self defined by a smooth pendent turn to south which reveals some rock outcrops that punctuate of white this territory. The loose rock walls, give evidence to the necessary use of the fields to purposes related with cultivation and herding; they also define the limits that give a singular geometry of this peculiar landscape.
Several ruins, of traditional origin, are the testimony of the strong presence of a vernacular architecture, characteristic of Serra d’Aire. Between the trees, the ruins set the borders of the property where the house is to be built. This occupies a kind of forest clearing, drawing in this manner the front of the house. It’s simple, white, and the several bodies define the suggested programme.
In this particular context, the house suggests a courtyard oriented towards the sunset, which is articulated with the surrounding vegetation.
Of what you can expect from the action of the architect is the design of a living landmark – there is no architecture without a project, there is no project without memory, there is no memory without ideas, there is no architecture without resident.
— Manuel Mendes, “Terra quanto a vejas, casa quanto baste”, in “Só nós e santa tecla”.
To north, the library and the office are open to the courtyard. The living room and the kitchen are located in the same body and establish a relationship with the outside through a continuous free span.
The bedrooms, at an inferior height, fills the opposite body to the library and opens to south to a landscape framed under the cork trees treetops. The frontal elevation that draws the front of the street is intended to be blind; just and only with the necessary fenestrations. A stone wall and a cistern announce the house entry.
This project is in progress and the construction is expected to start in the beginning of May 2016.
João de Deus Ferreira e Pedro Martins.