The Case Study House #9 designed by Charles Eames and Eero Saarinen for John Entenza, has been considered -from a building point of view- as the ‘twin’ of the #8; even though they fulfilled completely different needs. A contemporary journal defined them “technological twins but architectural opposites”.
From its publication in 1945 to when it was built, the Case Study House #9 had very little changes in its blueprint.
Becoming the first project of the program to have a steel and glass structure with concealed within plastered and wood-paneled surfaces interiors.
The Case Study House #9 is built on over a acre of meadow that overlooks the Pacific sea. Eames and Saarinen designed the plan to make the landscape as an extension of the inner space, to intimately interrelate the house with its environment.
To achieve a spacious inside to include within a fairly minimal structure, was the main goal of the architects. To do that they placed four steel columns in the center allowing cross bracing and continuity with most of the joist load transmitted to the outer rim of the rectangle, all carrying members inside bearing a fairly light and equal load.
The big living of the Case Study House #9 has a built-in seating and conversational area that makes easier to organize social activities as dinners or entertaining with few as many; the main Entenza request.
As the house project went through the status of idea, to draft, to model to reality it always followed a clear purpose and concept that Entenza had in mind. But beacuse of its coherent process -once finished- he was not stunningly surprised to see it as usually happens to whom sees his work finished and real for the first time.
As with all the similar projects, the construction phase has been subjected to several problems and delays. Nevertheless, the building resulted coherent to its original idea while creating a beautiful living environment.
Although the Case Study House #9 and #8 had similar structures and used the same materials and methods, they were conceptually different; the Entenza house is vertical while the Eames’s horizontal. But the main goal the architects probably achieved with the two projects was to demonstrate the flexibility of modular steel to fulfill different needs for different owners.
The roof is covered with a single flat slab of concrete and the interior ceiling made of birch wood strips. A wall of floor-to-ceiling sliding-glass doors opens the interior of the house to the exterior landscape of the meadow and the ocean beyond.
The interior open-plan layout features a 36-foot-long living room with a decoratively painted freestanding fireplace, a dining room, two bedrooms, two baths, a kitchen, and a study.
And it’s probably the study the only really private space of the house; with no windows to avoid distractions from the outside.
Entenza lived and worked in the Case Study House #9 for five years before selling it and it has since then went through many changes to its original interior design to please its several future owners.
Check the other projects of the Case Study Houses Program but WHAT DO YOU LIKE THE MOST OF THIS ARCHITECTURE? LET ME KNOW YOUR FEELINGS IN THE COMMENTS BELOW.
All the pics in this post are from the amazing Case Study Houses, one of my favorite books and a must have for al the enthusiasts about mid century modern. Check it out!