The name that the designers used to define this architecture is unequivocal and readily understandable: “casa de piedra”.
And if “casa-home” is the primaeval archetype of building, “casa di piedra-stone house” becomes the quintessence of stone architecture. Starting from this assumption, the home designed by Emilio Tuñón with Carlos Martínez Albornoz in Cáceres in Extremadura in central-western Spain provides the opportunity for a refined compositional exercise focusing on the theme of squares.
Nine squares within a square
The exterior of the house is a simple, prismatic volume with a square ground plan with sides measuring 17.40 meters. The interior has nine cubic spaces with sides measuring 4.20 metres hosting the various rooms in the house; they are divided by cruciform elements which, like the hollow walls, contain service functions (bathrooms, wardrobes). The central square is illuminated from above and has a spiral staircase going down to the basement level, which also hosts services/utilities. The other eight cubic spaces that revolve around open on to the external landscape through large, square windows with oak wood frames; the same wood is used for fixed furnishings and interior finishing/cladding. The rear of the house has a small swimming pool which invites people to enjoy the outdoor life.
Form and material
The house projects its image through a decorated external facade in as-split local quartzite uniformly cladding four sides of the prism. The only element dialoguing with the stone are the three openings on each side, clearly defined by the frames that highlight the thickness of the masonry work. This further highlights the evocative intentions of the “casa de piedra” and its declamatory character, following an approach to design welcomes, in works of the Tuñón Arquitectos studio, the natural legacy of the work of Emilio Tuñón together with Luis Moreno Mansilla, which has won numerous prizes and awards for applications of major importance such as the museums on Zamora, Castellón and León.
Project: Emilio Tuñón, Carlos Martínez Albornoz
Location: Sierrilla housing estate, Cáceres (Spagna)