Opening seamlessly to the trees of a former estate, this 5,300-square-foot country home reflects a Manhattan family’s desire for a luxurious—yet unpretentious—raw and comfortable retreat. The designer started the project by weaving a rescued 19th-century barn frame into existing 1980s structures, setting the stage for a richly textured material palette that would translate the old and the reclaimed into a new and modern language.
Design concept and solution: Discovering a demolition threatened New Jersey barn close in size to the retained portion of the existing house on the Amagansett property was this project’s first step. In the fashion of an archeological preservation, the barn’s frame was dismantled, cleaned, and repaired by the New Jersey Barn Company in preparation to be re-erected at the new site. Then, it was placed on a new foundation and assembled with only wooden pegs. In preparation to receive the barn, the property’s original 1980’s house was scaled back down to its main gabled structure, removing several bland additions. The iconic gabled forms of the new barn structure and the existing structures sit apart and at 90 degrees to one another, and are characterized by different sized openings. The glass and steel enclosure of the kitchen was conceived as the “connective tissue” to join the two structures and orient the inhabitants to the surrounding landscape.