The Marfa weeHouse, a compact desert retreat | Alchemy Architects
The Marfa weeHouse is a modern studio retreat in the high desert outside the artist community of Marfa, Texas. “WeeHouse” refers to the distinctive prefab building system developed by architect Geoffrey Warner of Alchemy Architects. Individual weeHouses are custom-designed for each client, then built in a factory and delivered to the building site as one or more fully-finished modules. Other elements, such as carports, decks and awnings, are typically site-built.
This 440 ft2 (40.9 m2) weeHouse has just two rooms, an all-in-one living space and a bathroom. The living space has a bed placed in the middle of the room with a kitchenette and dining area at one end and a small sitting area at the other end. Custom cabinetry and wood finishes dress up the room. The surprisingly large and luxurious bathroom has both a shower and a bathtub. A separate shed houses the laundry machines and hot water tank.
The two long sides of the home are enclosed entirely by floor-to-ceiling glass doors, giving the owners unobstructed views of the desert landscape and distant mountains from anywhere in the small dwelling. The glass doors allow the living space to easily expand out to the terraces on both sides. A large awning keeps the blazing Texas sun off the south terrace and glass doors.
The exterior looks to be clad in rusty steel but the siding actually consists of fibre cement panels coated with a special oxidizing paint. The paint contains metal filings which rust quickly when sprayed with a slightly acidic solution. The resulting rusty patina blends well with the muted colors of the surrounding desert vegetation.
Enjoy your weekend!
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Photographs courtesy of Alchemy Architects.
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