SRDA sculpts the 'house of concrete experiments' amidst an orchard in west india

SRDA sculpts the 'house of concrete experiments' amidst an orchard in west india

the ‘house of concrete experiments’ oozes intrigue

 

Architecture practice SRDA has recently completed the ‘House of Concrete Experiments’, a residential project located in India’s western peninsula, near Mumbai. Set on the foothills of the Deotalai village, the dwelling is nestled amidst a mango orchard, interrupting the green buffer with its strikingly unusual concrete architecture

 

As the name suggests, and according to SRDA, the project is ‘an experiment in all its aspects: its planning, construction, structural design, material usage, and play of light and shadow and its services. The details incorporated in the architecture and interiors of this house create continual intrigue making the otherwise overwhelming space very intimate and livable. The house is not easy to photograph. Its spaces need to be encountered and experienced.’

an experiment in all its aspects its planning construction structural design material usage play of light and shadow and its services a house of concrete experiments 3
all images © Niveditaa Gupta

 

 

meandering, fragmented, sizeable, and column-free 

 

SRDA (see more here) planned ‘The House of Concrete Experiments’ as a large studio space fitted with one master bedroom for the owners and two guest rooms stacked in a separate building separated from the main house by open courts. From the start, the studio decided to build the residence around the existing mango trees without disturbing any of them, resulting in its meandering and fragmented concrete form. Meanwhile, on the edge of the plot, SRDA turned an existing pit into a sunken courtyard filled with trees to introduce green foliage into the house. 

 

Structurally, the interiors reveal a sizeable, column-free space and a seamlessly flat concrete ceiling with no internal walls to avoid crowding the concrete volume. Moreover, three large sloping, cantilevered overhangs defy concepts of structural stability and are meticulously designed to offer shade and add movement to an otherwise flat form. 

an experiment in all its aspects its planning construction structural design material usage play of light and shadow and its services a house of concrete experiments 1
entry to the house 

 

 

playing with wall thicknesses and different concrete casts

 

Wall thicknesses range from 450mm to 1000mm, creating a sculptural effect and allowing owners to accommodate different types of storage within the house. They’re also fitted with a thermal pass to generate passive indoor cooling. ‘This method of air conditioning uses the thickness of the walls to its advantage, carving out small ducts within them which carry the cool air and circulate it through the large volume of the house while also cooling the concrete walls,’ explains SRDA. Recess windows were also added for waterproofing. 

 

Adding to the dramatic and sculptural aesthetic, the house features multiple playful skylights that flood the interiors with plenty of natural lighting. 

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cantilever overhang over veranda

 

 

The house is true to one material — that is, cast concrete — finished across the spaces using different techniques. To start, the thick concrete walls of the main building are cast with debris found on-site to reduce material usage and roughen up the texture; the debris includes stone chips, broken bricks, and, at times, large pieces of waste stone embedded in the walls, almost like a relic. On the other hand, the tactile walls feature a mix of debris cast concrete, waterjet concrete, and form finish concrete with pigments, each rendering a specific texture. Finally, the guest block reveals a pink concrete finish made by mixing the cast with brick powder to give it a ‘blush’.

 

The floors incorporate recycled waste stone pieces cast in concrete terrazzos. Specifically, black, white, and pink stones are paired with broken ceramic tile chips across different spaces to transform the flooring into one large artwork.an experiment in all its aspects its planning construction structural design material usage play of light and shadow and its services a house of concrete experiments 4

 

house-of-concrete-experiments-designboom-full

SRDA sculpts the 'house of concrete experiments' amidst an orchard in west india

cast concrete is finished across the spaces using different techniques

an experiment in all its aspects its planning construction structural design material usage play of light and shadow and its services a house of concrete experiments 5

 

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SRDA sculpts the ‘house of concrete experiments’ amidst an orchard in west india
 
SRDA sculpts the ‘house of concrete experiments’ amidst an orchard in west india
 
SRDA sculpts the ‘house of concrete experiments’ amidst an orchard in west india
 
SRDA sculpts the ‘house of concrete experiments’ amidst an orchard in west india
 

project info:

 

name: House of Concrete Experiments

location: Deotalai, Zirad, Maharashtra, South Mumbai, India

architecture: SRDA
project lead: Samira Rathod, Jay Shah

photography: Niveditaa Gupta

 

 

designboom has received this project from our DIY submissions feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.

 

edited by: lea zeitoun | designboom

ARCHITECTURE IN INDIA (247)

CONCRETE ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN (503)

RESIDENTIAL ARCHITECTURE AND INTERIORS (2817)

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