Architecture – “From architecture to traditional kitchen utensils, legends, and local heroes. Few places in Mexico have a constructive identity as strong as Guanajuato. In particular, stone is an element deeply rooted in all forms of cultural expression.” Explains Rogelio Vallejo Bores, founder of HW Studio that completed the ENSO II peaceful stone house in the heart of Mexico.
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The entire complex is organised based on a cruciform plan. The space is divided into four quadrants by a cross of stone alleys defining the paths, framing all moments, and separating one quadrant from the other. “Such a configuration forces a permanent pilgrimage between spaces; it reinforces contact with the earth, the air, and the mountain, like an ancient monastery framing the landscape, but at the same time forming a natural part of it.”
The lower right quadrant defines the welcoming area and features an endemic garden for humans and other living beings. The second quadrant hosts the cars, which are protected by the sun. Special care was taken to the trees that provide shade to protect the vehicles from the sun. A long, barely arched stone wall protects the entrance emphasising the mountain’s horizontal presence in the background.
In the third quadrant, there is a one-bedroom house. Wall-to-ceiling glass panels provide magnificent open views of the countryside from the living room and the bedroom. A single volume containing bathrooms, a dressing room, and a service area floor plan separates the public spaces from the private ones.
The fourth quadrant houses the office; this is the only visibly prominent vertical element that contrasts with the horizontality of the landscape and the rest of the elements, a gesture that flirts with the iconic volumes of the Santa Brígida mine in Mineral de Pozos.
HW Studio is an architectural studio created in Morelia, Mexico, in 2018, at the peak of a violent outbreak in the country. The studio emerged with the purpose of stimulating and involving Eastern and Western artistic and philosophical principles in architectural processes to recreate spaces that evoked and promoted the country’s threatened peace.
“We constantly seek to promote an appreciation of what really matters in life, eliminating the non-essential from architecture to reach levels of inner peace through conscious contemplation. As architects, we strive to create projects that pause the mind and introduce silence, where small glimpses of peace can be found.”
All photos by Cesar Bejar, courtesy of HW Studio.
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