Aladino House, designed by Iván Bravo Arquitectos and situated in the picturesque environs of Puerto Varas, Chile, epitomizes a compelling dialogue between the contrasting yet harmonious realms of architecture.
Completed in 2021, this project stands as a testament to the synthesis of utilitarian and residential design, rural charm and contemporary aesthetics, and the interplay of contrast and mimesis.
The location of Casa Aladino is a canvas in itself, nestled within a serene clearing amidst southern Chile's dense forestation. The house, elevated on posts, respects the natural topography and hydrology, allowing streams to meander towards a lagoon, a thoughtful nod to environmental stewardship. This elevation also serves as a metaphorical bridge, connecting the man-made structure with its natural surroundings.
The architecture of Casa Aladino is striking in its simplicity and precision. Its triangular geometry, a bold counterpoint to the untamed wilderness, speaks volumes about the dichotomy between nature and human intervention. This geometric clarity isn't just an aesthetic choice but also a functional one, influencing the internal layout and circulation. The building's program cleverly splits into two halves: one serving as a reception and storage area for a private park, and the other as a residence for Aladino, the park ranger. This bifurcation of function is seamlessly integrated into the design, ensuring that both aspects coexist without compromising each other's integrity.
The internal layout of Casa Aladino challenges conventional architectural norms. The absence of corridors, a radical departure from traditional design, democratizes space, eliminating hierarchies and encouraging exploration and discovery. Each space, defined by a uniform section, is differentiated subtly through a limited palette of colors and textures. This approach reflects a deep understanding of materiality, where each element is deconstructed and expressed throughout the house, revealing the intricate details and joints that often go unnoticed.
Externally, the house engages in a silent conversation with its surroundings. The thirty-meter-long structure asserts its presence yet maintains a respectful dialogue with the environment through its neutral, monochromatic facade, reminiscent of the region's traditional larch shake barns. This facade, with minimal openings, is not just an aesthetic choice but a thoughtful response to the local climate and landscape.
The structural system of Casa Aladino is an architectural feat in itself. The use of a singular dimensional lumber section at its core, with transversal beams defining the scale of each space, exemplifies a commitment to structural honesty and simplicity. This approach eliminates the need for conventional walls, resulting in an open interior space characterized by dual roof planes that support each other. This ingenious system not only maximizes the internal volume but also creates a dynamic interplay of light and shadow, enhancing the spatial experience.