Project: Cata-Vento House
Architects: Equipe Lamas
Lead Architect: Samuel Lamas
Location: Brasilia, Brazil
Area: 375 m²
Photographs: Joana França
The Cata-Vento House is implanted as a flower in the arid landscape of the Cerrado Biome, the Brazilian savannah. A couple seeking tranquility and connection with nature commissioned this urban refuge located 15 minutes from the center of Brasilia. The 2000 m2 plot made it possible to spread 375 m2 of construction through the land. Its volumetry consists of four loose volumes, drawn on a mesh of square modules and rotated around an uncovered internal courtyard, through which the volumes are interconnected.
These “boxes” sector the needs program and different frame views of the landscape: The first block houses the garage and service areas; the second, the TV room, office, and Master suite; in the third, two bedrooms, a shared bathroom, toilet, and the atelier. Lastly, the volume of the living/dining room and kitchen are fully integrated into the balcony by sliding doors.
A variety of perspectives are revealed while walking around the house. It is possible to view the garden and the swimming pool through the great circulation of the main entrance. The separation of volumes allows the user to see the exterior when circling the courtyard clockwise and offers a spatial relationship either introspective or extrospective. To honor the “ancient residents”, a native tree ‘ ipê’ that inhabited the construction site, was replanted as a sculpture in the center of the courtyard. Natural light and air penetrate all directions thanks to the extensive full-height glazing with tippers. The courtyard is filled with paths, gardens, and water, which besides humidifying the house, reflects the sky and projects its movements inside.
The house is built with low-cost materials and construction solutions. With mixed structures, the metal beams support concrete pillars. The external masonry walls are painted in light earth color and dialogue chromatically with the sky while the inner walls are white to highlight works of art and furniture. The cementitious floor coats the entire house, except in the wet areas, which are replaced by gray granite. The naval plywood, used in the lining, finds continuity in the kitchen furniture and on the shelves designed to accommodate the book collection of the residents.
Solar panels heat the water and pool all year round. For its interior, a playful spirit, with pieces designed by architect Samuel Lamas and masters of national and international design. Mariana Siqueira’s landscaping Project was thought of as an extension of the local biome, with native trees and weeds.