134 WOOD HOUSE

134
Wood House
Stuttgart, Germany
Project 1995

The plot is situated in a suburb of Stuttgart next to a park with tall, ancient oak trees. Most of the buildings in the neighbourhood are one or two stories high with gable or hip roofs, typical of the post-war architecture in so many suburbs of central Europe.

The client wanted a house with two apartments for his family and a floor of offices for the administration of his extensive collection of contemporary art. These needs are all united under one roof without being individually visible from the outside. The house has a unified, homogeneous form, like a kind of prototype. With its traditional roof and simple cubic shape it fits seamlessly into the typology of the neighbourhood. In addition, the wooden cladding conveys a pleasant mood, an atmosphere of living in the familiar world of the countryside.

At the same time this existing image is disrupted and called into question: the new house shows no juncture between facade and roof; and no division is made between the area of the roof and the exterior walls. The interior walls of the stairwell are also constructed of the same uniformly heavy beams. Daylight penetrates dimly through the cracks between the oak ties. From outside, the house looks heavy and compact, as if it had been carved out of one solid wooden block, like a model or a medieval shrine. The longer one looks at it, the more it deviates in scale and appearance from the neighbouring houses. In fact, it seems closer in spirit to the oak forest on the other side of the street - to the great archaic trees from another world.
Herzog & de Meuron, 1996

FACTS

Herzog & de Meuron Team:
Partners: Jacques Herzog, Pierre de Meuron
Project Team: Lukas Bögli, Stephan Wolff

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Gerhard Mack, Herzog & de Meuron: Herzog & de Meuron 1992-1996. The Complete Works. Volume 3.
Edited by: Gerhard Mack. Chinese ed. Beijing, China Architecture & Building Press, 2010. Vol. No. 3.

Gerhard Mack, Herzog & de Meuron: Herzog & de Meuron 1992-1996. Das Gesamtwerk. Band 3. The Complete Works. Volume 3.
Edited by: Gerhard Mack. 2nd adv. and rev. ed. Basel / Boston / Berlin, Birkhäuser, 2005. Vol. No. 3.

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2nd adv. and rev. ed. Vol. No. 60+84, Madrid, El Croquis, 2005.

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Edited by: Philip Ursprung. Exh. Cat. Herzog & de Meuron. Archaeology of the Mind. Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montreal. 23 October 2002 - 6 April 2003. 2nd ed. Baden, Lars Müller, 2005.

Herzog & de Meuron. Naturgeschichte.
Edited by: Philip Ursprung. Exh. Cat. Herzog & de Meuron. Archaeology of the Mind. Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montreal. 23 October 2002 - 6 April 2003. 2nd ed. Baden, Lars Müller, 2005.

Herzog & de Meuron. Histoire Naturelle.
Edited by: Philip Ursprung. Exh. Cat. Herzog & de Meuron. Archaeology of the Mind. Canadian Centre for Architecture, Montreal. 23 October 2002 - 6 April 2003. Baden, Lars Müller, 2002.

Nobuyuki Yoshida (Ed.): Architecture and Urbanism. Herzog & de Meuron 1978-2002.
Tokyo, A+U Publishing Co., Ltd., 02.2002.

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3rd adv. and rev. ed. Basel / Boston / Berlin, Birkhäuser, 1998. (= Studiopaperback).

Jacques Herzog: Compacidad. El Objeto Autista. Compactness. The Autistic Object.
In: Manuel Gausa (Ed.). Quaderns d'Arquitectura i Urbanisme. Forum Internacional 2. Debates Centrales. Main Debates. Vol. No. 214, Barcelona, Col-legi d'Arquitectes de Catalunya. Association of Catalan Architects, 1997. pp. 50-51.