Strength in Numbers – Six Square House by Young Projects
Six Square House by Young Projects is a contemporary residence located on a sprawling parcel of land in Bridgehampton. Comprised of half a dozen cubes, which tesselate from a centre point, defining the home’s overall footprint, this project illustrates a dance of complex geometries under a guise of repose.
Set back from the street at the end of a long driveway, Six Square House is a bold yet fitting counterpoint to the historic farmhouse at the front of the site, which was recently renovated and extended by Young Projects. Conceived as a retreat for the client and her family when hosting guests in the main house, it exists in strong conversation with the surrounding landscape and new pool house at the rear, giving the site an intriguing spatial narrative.in
The timber-clad exterior reads as a contemporary interpretation of Long Island’s traditional barn-like vernacular, yet the intricate arrangement of the six gabled forms and their rolling eaves, which appear to dip and bend at various points, give this project its incomparable identity. As Bryan Young, Founder and Co-Principal of Young Projects says, “the gabled modules are arranged to align roof ridges and create continuity from one module to the next.” He adds, “in contrast, each module’s roof eaves flow upward and downward, which results in a variety of undulating surfaces and unexpected sightlines across the exterior and interior of the home.” This dichotomy is tempered by the restrained palette of slatted Accoya timber, which appears to drape the home, setting it in place.
Stepping inside, the living area unfurls to the east and the kitchen sits to the west along the home’s curved central spine. Up above, the lines of the hybrid roofscape can be loosely traced across the ceiling. Lofty and bright, the sense of openness within this space is somewhat unexpected in comparison to the strict, geometric exterior. Bryan speaks to this, saying, “if each of the six volumes can be read as autonomous elements from the outside, from the inside, you begin to realise that in fact they’re conjoined in a very interesting way.” Each module is loosely tied to a different use – relaxing, sleeping, bathing and eating – however the boundaries between them are blurred, resulting in a welcomed if not surprising feeling of unity.
This cohesion is supported by the thoughtful and restrained material palette which, as partner and studio director Noah Marciniak says, was “selected to have a general lightness and warmth appropriate for a summer house in the Hamptons.” White oak floorboards stretch out underfoot, and ash cabinetry paired with creamy stone brings a soothing neutrality to the interiority. Noah adds that the materials are “composed in a way that reads as textural variations on a tight colour palette rather than high contrast or loud materials,” referring to the scalloped timber island bench with deep folded stone edges, among other characterful details.
The intentionally pared-back palette is not only fitting for the coastal locale, but it is the perfect backdrop to the client’s extensive collection of art and design. “It was critical to ensure the walls of the house really served to almost be a domestic gallery space,” Bryan says. Fittingly, many of the pieces were sourced from VERSO, Bryan’s New York-based gallery, including lighting by São Paulo studio, Palma, an oversized rose-hued tapestry by Sagarika Sundaram, which hangs from an apex point beneath a skylight in the kitchen, solid elm S34 chairs by French designer Pierre Chapo and more.
Sightlines to the surrounding landscape also enliven the interiors. Near the front entrance, large picture windows frame a meadow of wildflowers; an established fern garden abuts the bedrooms at the rear; and aspects from the primary living area capture the expansive lawned area and a significant existing tree. As well as creating a brilliant interplay of colour and light, these vistas strengthen the connection between built form and landscape, which, as Bryan says, was critical in ensuring the house “wouldn’t feel foreign or alien within the site.”
There is a lot to digest at Six Square House – from its dense, architectural detail and expertly placed apertures to the ever-changing roster of art and design. However, this feeling of awe is tempered by the overwhelming urge to slow down and be still within its walls. For a piece of architecture to elicit such emotions is a neat and, in this case, befitting upshot.