Located on one of the great, deep ravines feeding water into Lake Michigan, Levy House is a post-tensioned concrete and steel-clad residence designed by LA DALLMAN. This residential project is an example of the integration of structure and building skin with steel cladding components developed by the architect and regional metal fabricators. The main inspiration for the design comes from the sculptural characteristics of the landform.
This awesome project is noted for its material innovations and exemplary detailing, featuring in forthcoming publications in Spain and China. It also got Merit Award recognition by the American Institute of Architects Wisconsin.
The conditional, restless realm of geology and fluvial systems are the sculptural characteristics of landform. These characteristics provide the main inspiration for the entire design of this house. With quiet, stoic volumes of weathering steel and cement stucco, this awesome house builds earthen density.
The house interior is protected from the public thanks to the restrained face shields, helping to cradle the entry sequence and anchor the house to its site as well. Enclosed in glass and carved out of the deep strata of the first-floor mass, the house’s primary living spaces can create stunning wide views into the awesome surrounding landscape.
These living spaces are embedded within and thrusting free of the house’s eroded mass simultaneously. The interior of the house is also engaged with the surrounding landscape.
A rich set of intentional juxtapositions also can be found in this house.
The second-floor slab of post-tensioned concrete allows for a steel box hovering above a long-span living space, a progressively cantilevered massing, and a delicate, 42’ length of the wrapping window wall. The reserved front facade of this house can give way to the expansive, extroverted, and unexpected rear facade with the form contrasts’ sharpness and the weathering steel’s velvet texture.
The mass has a striking composition that blends against the forest backdrop: the warm copper stain softens the concrete toughness and the glass, prismatic volumes sculpt shafts of natural light during the days deep into the house interior.
Levy House Gallery
Photography: LA DALLMAN