Architects: 3r Ernesto Pereira     Photography: João Morgado     Construction Period:  2017     Location:  Marco de Canaveses, Portugal

When observing this project, it is the sensations that we experience that leave the mark when we think, walk and live through it.

This project was clearly inspired by the location, a piece of land surrounded by chestnut trees, incredibly torn into the mountain, flanked by a stream flowing down the hillside and a magnificent open view across the valley perfectly nestled in the nature landscape.

It was this bucolic setting that led to an undertaking that was not intended to impose itself on the surrounding nature, but rather to blend, hide and transform with it. This gave rise to the concept of “Camouflage House”.

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This is how the house lands on the location and “deviates” from the existing trees, emphasizing the attitude of lightness and conservation of the surrounding nature. The two leaves, the roof and the floor, open up to the landscape and are scored each time they come across a tree. This has resulted in courtyards that introduce dynamism and movement into a house marked by a well-defined rhythm of the wooden pillars, which support the garden-roofed roof. The rest is transparency, glass, which is the only solution that makes sense in this scenario.

In summer, the dense vegetation of the trees “swallows” the entire house, making it almost imperceptible while protecting the interior from the intense sun. In winter, deciduous trees shed their leaves, allowing the sun’s rays to penetrate inside and warm the house, making it slightly more visible among the bare branches.

Whether indoors or outdoors, living in the forest or with the forest, exposed or in communion, a different project, which is difficult to explain but which feeds the will to live.

Text provided by the architect.