The design draws on the special regional attributes of the Northern Black Forest building tradition at various levels. The result is a timber frame construction arranged around an inner clay core, whereby the outer construction establishes a direct link to the Northern Black Forest.
In its reduced form, the house was neatly arranged around the inner clay core, which contains a stove, stairs and supply lines, making it the central design element in the interior. It gives order to the rooms and can be found in almost every room of the house. This creates flowing, open spaces and a fascinating spatial structure that, together with the central oven, is inspired by local building traditions.
This play on Black Forest building culture is echoed in the exterior design of the building. It was constructed as a classic pitched roof house with a larch formwork and no roof overhang in order to allow the facade to grey evenly. The windows are all square and positioned in height and size according to the orientation and requirements of the interior, giving each room unique views of the natural surroundings. The windows are accented with Black Forest shutters that emphasise the asymmetry of the facade and lend it a playful and lively appearance despite the building’s sleek, minimalist structure.
The timber frame construction has highly insulated exterior walls and is reinforced inside with a central ‘heavy element’ made of clay bricks. This gives the lightweight construction the required mass for heat storage. Clay is also a highly effective moisture regulator with an ability to absorb and release moisture, which ensures a pleasant, healthy indoor climate. The water-fired stove and solar panels on the roof augment the heating system and, together with the energy efficiency of the construction, reduce the consumption of fossil fuels. The house was awarded the 2012 Baden-Württemberg Timber Construction Prize