the architect of nature

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Quintessa Pavilions in Napa Valley

Situated on a ridgeline within the breathtaking 280-acre Quintessa Estate in Napa Valley, the Quintessa Pavilions designed by Walker Warner Architects exemplify the ideal fusion of architecture and nature. Immersed in the landscape and surrounded by vineyard-covered hills, each pavilion is carefully sited to protect visitors from the elements while preserving the surrounding oak trees that naturally shade the area. Built with sustainability in mind, the overall design echoes the existing winery in its environmental sensitivity and industrial material palette that ages and weathers elegantly. The result is three, unique wine tasting pavilions that can be utilized year-round despite the weather.

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I can always tell when an architect loves nature. The Ticino region in the south of Switzerland is a prime example of how man and nature can live in harmony.

If you’re cold I’ll keep you warm
And besides, there’s so much beauty in a storm
—  La Dispute - Fall Down, Never Get Back Up Again
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House in Osaka

Metal curtains can be drawn across the windows of this three-and-a-half-metre-wide house in Osaka by FujiwaraMuro Architects, which features a split-level layout with multiple staircases. The tightly packed site and its urban setting called for a design that could provide plenty of natural light, without compromising the homeowner’s privacy. FujiwaraMuro Architects’ response was to create a slender three-storey house, with full-height windows set back from a stainless-steel chain curtain that lets in light while maintaining privacy.

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Casa Lapa in Lima 

Casa Lapa in Lima, Peru designed by architect Martin Dulanto is a minimal residence with a simple geometry and natural finishes accentuated by a bright yellow staircase.

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Frank Lloyd Wright, American Architect

It might seem unusual that MoMA’s 1939 building, which corresponded in so many ways with the International Style, should host a major retrospective of the work of Frank Lloyd Wright the following year. Wright, after all, had rejected many of the precepts of the hard-edged industrial imagery of the younger European architects with whom he had shared gallery space in the Museum’s first architecture show eight years earlier. But over the course of the 1930s MoMA looked more and more to issues of regional expression, American-ness in architecture, and an embrace of natural materials, notably wood. “Frank Lloyd Wright, American Architect"—which Wright took full control over, often to the frustration of nominal curator John McAndrew—was intended to culminate in a full-scale wooden Usonian house in MoMA’s new Sculpture Garden, seen through the plate glass windows beyond Wright’s display of his drawings and models. The show was at once of and by Wright, and focused overwhelmingly on his most recent work. Now, nearly 80 years later, Wright returns to MoMA in the exhibition "Frank Lloyd Wright at 150: Unpacking the Archive,” on view through October 1.

See images from the 1940 exhibition and more at mo.ma/52exhibitions