Architectural Classics: House on the River / Amancio Williams

0

Architectural Classics: House on the River / Amancio Williams

Located in a particularly natural setting in the city of Mar del Plata, the “Casa sobre el Arroyo” (House on the River) – known as “Casa del Puente” (The House of the Bridge) – is considered a component paradigmatic of the 20th century architecture and essential reference of the modern movement in Argentina and Latin America.

The house designed by Argentinian architect Amancio Williams, commissioned by his father, the musician Alberto Williams, is a constructed proof of the ability to establish a link between the modern rationality of the human being with nature and its topography.

via © Wikipedia User: Edufortes Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0
via © Wikipedia User: Edufortes Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

© Javier Deyheralde© Lucia Mariotto© Javier Deyheralde© Javier Deyheralde+ 40

Designed and built between 1943 and 1946, with the collaboration of the architect Delfina Gálvez de Williams, the house is located on a plot consisting of two blocks in a natural area characterized by the “Las Chacras” stream that crosses it.

© Javier Deyheralde
© Javier Deyheralde

© Javier Deyheralde© Lucia Mariotto© Javier Deyheralde© Javier Deyheralde+ 40

The structure is designed in three dimensions, synthesized in pure geometric shapes that work integrally. It is composed of three basic elements: a curved surface, the horizontal components of the main volume and the roof-terrace plan.

© Javier Deyheralde
© Javier Deyheralde

© Javier Deyheralde© Lucia Mariotto© Javier Deyheralde© Javier Deyheralde+ 40

The curved arch that connects the two banks of the stream works in parallel with the ground floor slab by means of the vertical partitions and the beams that materialize the railing that surrounds the entire volume, creating a structure that allows all the interior spaces relate to the natural context outside through the windows that are positioned along the entire horizontal perimeter of the house.

Section in Axonometry.  Image © Fabian Dejtiar
Section in Axonometry. Image © Fabian Dejtiar

The reinforced concrete used for the structure was hammered on the outside and chemically treated to give it a meaningful look and leave it outside uncoated.

Access to the two main staircases contained in the curve of the arch is via the materialized sector of the ground floor which constitutes the two support points of the bridge. With regard to the steps of the stairs, the rise decreases as one goes up, following the curvature of the vault.

Detalle Grafismo Sección Axonométrica.  Image © Fabian Dejtiar
Detalle Grafismo Sección Axonométrica. Image © Fabian Dejtiar

Section Perspective Planta.  Image © Fabian DejtiarDetail Section Vista.  Image © Fabian DejtiarAxonometry.  Image © Fabian DejtiarVista Outlook section.  Image © Fabian Dejtiar+ 40

The interior of the house presents a linear typology, a series of rooms open to a gallery that refers to the traditional Porteño “house of chorizo”, whose division is materialized by cedar plywood panels with strips of walnut edge, and which establishes a distinctive division between public and private spaces.

Despite the acts of vandalism suffered after its abandonment, including arson and graffiti, the house has remained standing and has been restored for use as a museum. Today, the house has several declarations of cultural and historical heritage value, making it a milestone in Amancio Williams’ approach to modern architecture.


La Casa Sobre el Arroyo by Amancio Williams / Ediciones 1:100

Share.

Comments are closed.