Black and White Drama in Hollywood Hills by

Issue 60 · Film Fest · February 22, 2013

Black and White Drama in Hollywood Hills

Issue 60 · Film Fest · February 22, 2013

Xten Architecture blend their own brand of Los Angeles drama with thoughtful Swiss restraint into a sculptural remodel of a 1960s house in Hollywood Hills.

A house in the hills of Los Angeles comes with interconnected terraces that follow the down slope as a matter of course; it's what you do with the terraces to make the most of your views that matters most. While geotechnical, zoning, and budget constraints required the architects to keep the building foundations and footprint of this house the same, Xten Architecture principals Monika Hafelfinger (she’s Swiss and worked for the renowned Swiss architects Herzog de Meuron) and Austin Kelly (he’s an American who trained with the other famous Swiss architect, Peter Zumthor, and then worked with three LA architect greats; Frank Israel, Frank Gehry, and Eric Owen Moss) were undeterred; managing to reconfigure the entire house; adding extra terraces to broaden views and increase direct connections with the landscape while tying it all together into one sculptural form with a judicious palette and use of materials.

Photography by Steve King via Architizer.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, all white interior, Remodelista

Above: "A series of abstract indoor-outdoor spaces with framed views to nature are rendered in white surfaces of various materials and finishes; lacquered cabinetry, epoxy resin floors and decks and painted metal," the architects say.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, view into all white kitchen, Remodelista

Above: The black trim of the window trim is the only thing to suggest a difference between interior kitchen space and exterior terrace space.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, new terrace extension from kitchen onto roof deck, Remodelista

Above two: The architects added a 500 square foot terrace and wide outdoor stair next to the kitchen, creating an outdoor connection between the living room and the kitchen, and another between the living room and a large rooftop deck.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, new terrace extension from kitchen, Remodelista

Above: The white interiors extend out into the terrace as outdoor room, which has been created through floor to ceiling glass sliding panels that disappear into adjacent walls when open.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, all white interior spaces, Remodelista

Above: Views of the surrounding hills are available from different levels.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, white interior with bright pink magenta chairs, Remodelista

Above: The house sits on a ridge underneath the Hollywood sign and belongs to models to Ryan Burns and Aline Nakashima.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, all white bathroom, Remodelista

Above: A bath with a view.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, all white interior spaces extending out onto all white exterior terrace, Remodelista

Above two: "While the exterior is perceived as a specific finite and irregular object in the landscape the opposite occurs inside the building," the architects say. "Once inside the multitude of white surfaces blend the rooms together, extending ones sense of space and creating a heightened, abstract atmosphere from which to experience the varied forms of the hillside landscape."

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, exterior looking into all white space, Remodelista

Above: "The contrast between the interior and exterior of the house is intentional and total," the architects say.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, night time birds eye view, Remodelista

Above: The dramatic contrast between the white interiors and the black exteriors heightens the abstract forms of the house.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, house nestled into the hills, Remodelista

Above: With a such a small building (1800 square feet), the architects felt it was important to treat the building as one single piece and wrapped the structure in new plaster which was then painted black.

Xten Architecture, Naka House, Hollywood Hills, diagram, Remodelista

Above: A diagram that illustrates the steps the architects too to reconfigure the house.

Nothing beats the graphic drama created by the contrast between black and white. Interested trying it out in your own home?See 5029 images of Black and White in our Gallery of rooms and spaces.



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