Casa Viva La Vega by Serrano+Baquero

Casa Viva La Vega is a brick home located in Granada, Spain, designed in 2021 by Serrano+Baquero.

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Description

Horacio and Vanesa’s childhood memories are linked to the fertile plain of Granada; the murmur of the irrigation ditches, the coolness in the shade of the poplars, the materiality, and the light inside the drying sheds or the distant landscape of Sierra Nevada. In 2017, after acquiring a plot near Albolote, at the foot of the Tajo Colorao and in front of an olive grove, we were commissioned to make a house with the desire that we try to link that agricultural image of the vega that resided in their memory with their current family needs. The plot is of narrow proportions, a situation aggravated by the existence of an easement for the use of the acequiero on one of the long sides. This route is necessary for the daily maintenance of the irrigation ditch that borders one of the short sides.

The balance between the wishes and memories of the agricultural character of the clients with their needs was materialized through the elements present on the site and the adjoining agricultural infrastructures. A poplar plantation is planted as a welcome and an elevated irrigation channel accompanies the house from the entrance to the pool. A large sunny orchard area is arranged next to a pergola for resting. Between these elements and in relation to them is the house, of simple but careful construction, which shows concrete and ceramic brick as the main materials.

The project tried to respond to the geometry of the plot by adopting an elongated configuration, reminiscent of tobacco drying sheds. This situation allowed for an interesting relationship and interchange between both long facades, due to their proximity. We proposed a series of sections that responded to the different boundary conditions depending on their position. Thus appeared opaque walls of different heights, roofs with different inclinations, skylights, lattices, and windows depending on the opportunity for distant views, direct or filtered light, presence of nearby buildings, contact with the irrigation ditch or the orchard, and the need for privacy. It was our intention that at certain points of the house there would be views that would cross it completely, allowing light, air, the sound of water, and the gaze to cross the space contained inside the bay. Vanessa, Horacio, Marco, and Mauro could traverse the volume longitudinally, through the sections that follow each other and establish changing spatial relationships according to the hours of the day and the seasons.

The Viva la Vega house serves as a manifesto and transmitting element of the love that the clients profess to this agricultural territory to their two children so that they can also enjoy an atmosphere similar to that of their childhood.

Photography by Fernando Alda

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- by Matt Watts

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