Oblong Valley Greek Revival / Hendricks Churchill
Text description of the architects. The house, completed in Sharon, CT in fall 2019, was commissioned by a family who initially commissioned the company to plan two outbuildings on the property, which ultimately inspired the final house and the center of the property. Under the direction of the client and co-founder Rafe Churchill, due account is taken of the Greek revival tradition in the architectural design. While it is being presented formally, the house remains cautious in its detailing and composition with three prevailing principles: In order to take full advantage of the unique and pastoral surroundings of the place, to take into account the historical location and the architectural context of the main house and to create a home for a young person Family that is conducive to contemporary life. Since Asher Benjamin was an important supporter of the Greek revival style in early America, the order and proportions of the house were derived from his 1830 treatise, The Practical House Carpenter. Inspiration was also found in local precedents and in the work of Benjamin Henry Latrobe and William Strickland.
The home is in the Oblong Valley, which runs for sixty miles from the Berkshires foothills along the Connecticut-New York border. Only two miles wide, the valley has retained its character from gentle hills, open pastures and ancient forests since colonial times. It was crucial to balance the stature of the house with the size of the landscape in which it is located, while keeping it appropriate to the architectural language of the area. The customer’s love for the surrounding historic Hudson Valley houses gave our proposal for a modern American Greek revival house a shared dynamic. Your only condition: While the house should appear majestic in its attitude, it should feel like a family home.
The large front portico forms the central reference to the proportions of the rest of the building. The central colossal hall is connected by two hyphens and runs outwards to two symmetrical wings on the first floor on the east, the dining room, the formal living room, the winter garden and the screened-in porch. to the west is the large open-plan kitchen, informal dining and living areas, mud flaps, laundry, study and bathroom. Behind the colossus there is a large family room with a view of a formal garden level and a swimming pool. The west entrance of the house has a reduced portico with Greek-Doric columns. The mud room into which it leads is more suitable than the daily entrance to the house, but has similarly scaled proportions. The mudroom entrance is lined with open shelves, beadboard and coat hooks and is near the laundry with dog washing station. It is in harmony with practical family life. The kitchen with informal seating is open to a common breakfast and seating area. A large table in the living room and dining room overlap in one room. While the inner mill follows the Greek revival tradition, the combined use of the rooms speaks for a less formal and more contemporary life.
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