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Topo House

Johnsen Schmaling Architects

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  • Structural Engineer: Larson Engineering

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Project Description

From the AIA:

Echoing the dramatic surface deformations that occur when wind blows over the crops and grasses of the surrounding prairie, the building skin, a high-performance ventilated rainscreen system with concrete fiber panels, is organized by 190 individually shaped, black-anodized aluminum fins of interrelated contracting and expanding shapes. Depending on the time of the day and the angle from which they are viewed, the fins create a constantly changing veil whose shifting geometry subverts the volumetric simplicity of the house itself. The house is built around a palette of sustainable and highly durable materials and features an envelope that is designed to endure the continuous onslaught of the Midwest’s severe weather conditions and extreme temperature fluctuations.

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