El Fabricante of Espheras recently have completed Vernacular Penthouse in Valencia, Spain.
Description by architect: I remember my grandmother telling me how her house was, full of light and joy… The Vernacular Penthouse is a chance to reflect about Valencian houses and a possibility to experiment between traditional and contemporary architecture.
Between the Valencian farmlands, there’s a village whose landscape is dominated by orange trees. An ancient brick factory recalls the splendours of a past time. Near the city centre, and surrounded by buildings of the 20th century, there’s an empty dwelling that became Vernacular Penthouse. You can hear the blinds opening to let you see the tiled roofs of the neighbourhood, while the light has the leading role, filling the whole house. Under your feet, a carpet made of clay invites you to walk barefoot.
Just after going through the main door, you can find the larder, full just as my grandmother would have desired; that’s where everything needed in a current kitchen is hidden. Furthermore, there’s the house’s table, large and long, where the family meets around for meals. In the dining, two protected windows light up the room. The ceramic skirting board reminds me of my grandmother’s house and the white wooden blinds are rolled up to let the Sun bathe the living. The sea wind goes through the windows to the other side of the house. You can feel the fresh breeze.
One step forward, there’s a curious device, called “aiguamans” by my grandmother; a new-ancient furniture that hides the washbasin and generates some privacy. Its materials are kind to the white ceramic, the clay and the whitewashed walls.
Through the corridor, a weak golden light follows you, creating an atmosphere between light and dark that envelops the bedroom. The bathroom is open to the corridor, so they both benefit from the other. The furniture that was larder in the kitchen becomes a wardrobe here. Wooden blinds hide the clothes and the path to the bath, making the house tidy.
Clay has been our fellow traveller, guiding us through the penthouse. Every step has been made on the presence of this infinite carpet. I’m sure that my grandmother would like living in Vernacular Penthouse, she would feel just like home.