The Black Home Renovation

Phoenix, AZ

2400 sf

3 bedroom + 2 bath + guest quarters w/ bath

2 car garage

Category
Phoenix, AZ
About This Project

“Mr. Plumbean lived on a street where all the houses were the same.” So begins The Big Orange Splot by Daniel Manus Pinkwater, a deep introspective exploration of suburban architecture… ok, actually it’s a children’s book.  But a darn good one and a better analysis of the plight of suburban residential architecture than any tome I read in college.

I once heard an architect say that “every neighborhood needs an incident.” The Black House is this Phoenix neighborhoods incident as it sits among the little pink house fabric of suburban Phoenix.

The Black House material palette is rusty metal, exposed steel, minimal landscaping (so each tree or plant is a sculpture).  The above photo shows the rusty metal steel sculpture that hides pool equipment, a transformer and unattractive block.

In The Big Orange Splot, Mr. Plumbean defended his home, ““My house is me and I am it. My house is where I like to be and it looks like all my dreams.” Then the Big Orange Splot concludes with the neighbors (SPOILER alert) catching Mr. Plumbean’s vision, renovating each of their homes to reflect their dreams.

“Whenever a stranger came to the street of Mr. Plumbean and his neighbors, the stranger would say, “This is not a neat street.”

“Then all the people would say, “Our street is us and we are it.  Our street is where we like to be, and it looks like all our dreams.”

    

Published in the Arizona Republic, Houzz and seen on Fox 10 news “Cool House” segment.