This house, located in Cartagena, near Murcia with a built-up area of 126 m2, was commissioned by the owner who was clear about his priorities: comfort for himself and his cats and thus the project name, Housing for a Painter and two Cats.
Furthermore, the client that trusted Martín Lejarraga and the team asked them to keep the memory of the home in which he had been born and raised.
The original house, located on a corner in a working-class neighborhood has a simple and reasonable architecture, with a square floor plan and double-height.
The facades, on one side, have been covered with white tiles, and on the other, this material follows the path of the staircase volume. From this, it continues in metal slats with skylights that allow light to enter the private areas: bathroom and dressing room, located on the 1st floor.
Inside, it has cleared both floors, getting rid of all the partitions and opening it to a patio that articulates several situations: a metal staircase that leads to the terrace, the direct exit from the living room, and a secondary entrance directly from the outside to the patio.
In the courtyard, balancing the height, from the wall that separates the plot from the adjoining house, there is a fence made of metal mesh that wraps it, like a skin, wherein the set of directions of the fabric, you can read the large cardinal points that mark the location of the house.
The decoration whose furniture has been made by the owner is made up of wooden containers that house a bar cabinet, television and music equipment, a bookstore, a simple office table, and the presence of the Eames Lounge Chair accompanies the serenity of the space.
Ascending the interior staircase, which is framed like a white tunnel between the exterior wall represents the visual cleanliness, both in architecture and furniture that was already found on each floor on the house. Simply put, it is a spacious room with striped walls that opens to a central patio with a balcony.
The project Housing for a Painter and two Cats is the result of a friendly and trusting relationship between owner and architect, where needs and sensations have been exposed, and a situation is resolved spatially.
Photograph: David Frutos