Nicole de Jong
Peterson & Collins
2332 Ontario Rd NW
Washington, DC 20009
United Structural Engineers
21495 Ridgetop Circle, Suite 104
Sterling, VA 20166
Therese Baron Gurney, ASID
Baron Gurney Interiors
5110 1/2 MacArthur Blvd NW
Washington, DC 20016
Hoachlander Davis Photography
5110 1/2 MacArthur Boulevard, NW
Washington, DC 20015
Completed: August 2016
After time spent in their modern, light-filled Miami, Florida space, the owners of this NW Washington DC house found themselves yearning for the same quality of light in their primary residence. The existing DC residence had a traditional layout with compartmentalized spaces, heavy trim, and a dark palette of materials. A beautiful garden, developed over the owners’ thirty years at the property, seemed isolated from the interior spaces.
In this redesign, changes were implemented throughout the house, but the major revisions revolved around the family room, breakfast room, and kitchen, located at the back of the house and adjacent to the carefully cultivated garden. From its conception, the design focused on infusing the spaces with light and creating a seamless transition between interior and exterior spaces.
The renovation process was primarily reductive; interior walls were removed, trim and moldings were eliminated and the most solid exterior wall obstructing views to the garden was replaced with floor to ceiling glass. A small steel and glass addition, encompassing 88 square feet enlarges the family room.
Incorporation of the owner’s expansive art collection, including work by luminaries Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Gilliam, and George Condo was central to the redesign. The integration of the interior spaces and the garden was essential. In the redesign, interior materials are pared down to highlight the art. New stone flooring extending from the interiors onto adjacent terraces and into the garden enhances the integration of these spaces. Doors and windows fold open and create an open-air connection that reinforces this relationship.
Ultimately, this project involves synthesizing art, light, and landscape. The project incorporates a modern architectural language that coexists within a traditional house in an established neighborhood.