Architecture

Stahl House by JC Buck

This photo was taken late February, 2015.  had just spent a month in California living out of a rental camper van. I had traveled the entire state taking pictures and this was my last photo shoot, working for Modern Christmas Trees at the Stahl House.  It truly was a remarkable experience that I’ll cherish for ever. In this shot, Matt and his crew just finished setting up. All we had to do was wait for the sun to go down. What an amazing night!  

Buck House by JC Buck

Last time I was in Los Angeles I had to find this house, we share something in common, we have the same name. This is the Buck house designed by Rudolph Schindler for John J. Buck, an interior designer of clothing stores. My name is John C Buck. I don’t think we are related, but I haven’t looked into it. There is not much online about this house, its rarely published. If anyone knows anything about this home, please contact me. I would love to meet the owners. I tried, but no one was home. - JC

Buck House, Los Angeles © 2017 JC Buck

Beloved Village Community by JC Buck

© 2017 JC Buck

I've been intrigued by tiny houses over the past few years for a whole host of reasons. I like the simplicity to them. I'm interested in the low costs, accessibility, and portability these simple structures provide. They have the ability to solve some of our greatest housing issues from affordability to disaster relief shelters.  

Yesterday, a friend of mine and I were chatting about tiny houses and she told me about the Beloved Community Village, Denver's first Tiny House community specifically designed to help the homeless. The community is a collaboration with Colorado Village Collaborative and to my understanding is all partner funded and volunteer built. The community will have 11 tiny houses and accommodate up to 22 people. It will start as a 180 day pilot program and then the tiny houses are planned to be moved to another site. Currently, the temporary zoning approved for the project only allows for the tiny houses to be in one location for up to six months. 

© 2017 JC Buck

The houses are estimated to cost between $2500-5000 based on two other tiny house communities in the country per the Beloved Community Village's website. The website references Dignity Village in Oregon, which houses up to 60 people, as a model the Denver tiny house community has been following.  

Its estimated by the Metro Denver Homeless Initiative's Point in Time Survey that there is nearly 6,000 homeless each night in Denver. The mission of the Beloved Community Village is to provide housing for homeless, create community, and self-governance. The goal is to have up to five of theses communities throughout Denver by next summer, according to Cole Chandler, a stakeholder in the project.

After checking out the tiny house community, currently being installed at 38th & Walnut in RiNo, I wanted to write a brief post, share some photos and applaud all the people and organizations that have come together to create this community. The whole cost of the program is about $130K. If you are interested in donating, learning more and getting involved with the Beloved Community Village, check out its website.  

- JC

Dallas by JC Buck

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Texas

As we live and as we are, Simplicity - with a capital “S” - is difficult to comprehend nowadays. We are no longer truly simple. We no longer live in simple terms or places. Life is a more complex struggle now. It is now valiant to be simple: a courageous thing to even want to be simple. It is a spiritual thing to comprehend what simplicity means
— Frank Lloyd Wright
Dallas
Dee and Charles Wyly Theater
My Curves are Not Mad

ION Adventure Hotel by JC Buck

Selfoss, Iceland

This is the ION Adventure Hotel in Iceland. It is the type of luxury boutique hotel I'm most comfortable in. No over-the- top dressed bellman, no porte-couchere lined with exotic cars, no crowded interior lobby spaces with frantic business travelers trying to impress. This Icelandic space welcomes you in like your cool architect friend's modern home you wish was yours. It's quiet like a contemporary museum, not in a “don’t touch the art” kind of way, but in a peaceful “welcome to a space all about design” kind of way.

The 45 room boutique hotel was designed by Erla Dögg and Tryggvi, an Icelandic born and raised architect couple based in Santa Monica, California. Minarc specializes in creative, minimalistic, residential and commercial spaces. Their portfolio of work is beyond stunning.

In addition to designing the ION, the couple owns and founded the company that framed the structure. The project was built using mnmMOD prefabricated panels. The panels are made of Cradle to Cradle certified extruded polystryrene and 30% recycled steel with no waste generated in the fabrication process. The panels are energy efficient and save in time and cost, with efficient on-site construction.

Inside, throughout the guest rooms, hallways, restaurant and bar area are carefully curated local art installations. The interior materials reflect Iceland’s natural and local resources like lava, driftwood and recycled rubber. The simple floorplan of the community spaces, restaurant, hallways and intimate rooms line up perfectly for my rectilinear seeking eye, creating a clean visual aesthetic of minimalism.

Structurally, one of my favorite characteristics of the ION's design is how the new addition sits atop concrete pillars hosting the GRAND main attraction, an all glass rectangular bar lounge area with 20ft ceilings and breathtaking views of the magical Icelandic countryside.

I can't say enough good things about Iceland and this thoughtfully designed boutique hotel. We had a wonderful time there and will definitely stay again when we return. Thank you to the talented duo of Escape to Shape who curated our experience and picked the most special place to stay while we enjoyed the wonders of Iceland.

- JC