Boyle Heights Residence

Site: Boyle Heights, Los Angeles
Fall 2017 || Design Studio
Instructor: Ramiro Diaz-Granados

The project began with a close reading of two seemingly incompatible precedents due to the difference in time: John Soane’s Museum and Preston Scott Cohen’s Lightfall. With the atrium being the common denominator, I took a position to make a direct and legible correlation between the old and the new. While it can be argued that there is little intrinsic value in citing a reference to the overall design proposal, my argument was to use the precedents to reappropriate some of the historical attributes such as organization, construction, composition, materiality, etc. and apply it towards contemporary architectural sensibilities.

The goal was to eventually integrate the study into a design that covers a new position in how we think about tectonics, composition, as well as aesthetics. Through formal and methodological analysis, I became interested in creating an autonomous interior, strategically negating the increasing tension in Boyle Heights due to the ongoing problem of gentrification. As such, the massing has a double reading - one of a pure form and the other as a metaphorical one in which the exterior is divorced from the interior, opening up the possibility that the shell can appear as any other house in the surrounding neighborhood.