Featured in Design New England Magazine (July/Aug 2018)
There is a small forest inside this vacation house on the Cape Cod short of Buzzards Bay, and it was only a short time before family members spontaneously strung a couple of hammocks between the gray pine trunks.
Witnessing grown-ups and kids nestled in the canvas, swaying beneath an imaginary breeze, Jill Neubauer, the house’s designer, says, “That represents why I am an architect: the joy of making homes for families to love.”
The forest is actually 71 Southern yellow pine columns, stained gray, that range in height from 5 to 25 feet and support various parts of the house. They typify the serendipitous exchanges between clients and architect that led to this smile-making residence. A strip of untouchable conservation land lies between the house and the water, and its grove of white oaks could not be pruned. Neubauer, whose firm, Jill Neubauer Architects, is in Falmouth, Massachusetts, proposed embracing the situation. “Let’s abstract that landscape and bring it into the house,” she offered, infusing the interior with “the color of the outside trees on a grayish day.” the clump of domesticated trunks — structural when straight, expressive when leaning — acts as a filter-like scrim from the entrance, forming a transition from the outside world through to the quiet seascape beyond.