Location: Scutari, Albania
Program: New private house and artist space
Size: 500 sqm
The historic city center of of Scutari, a small city 50 km from the Adriatic coast, the cradle of Albanian culture and the so-called “Florence of the Balkans,” has been subject large-scale real-estate speculation, which has indiscriminately demolished traditional architecture in favor of anonymous and commercial towered buildings. In this area, an artist wishes to reconstruct his atelier and home on a centuries-old land, without losing the spirit and function of the original house and with respect for the area’s traditional architectural cannons. The challenge is that of creating a new building which responds to the contemporary needs of the client and his family, one that inserts itself seamlessly between the new and old buildings and offers refuge from the indiscreet and cumbersome modern towers that surround it. The adopted solution is a two-floored horseshoe-shaped building. South-facing, the construction affords pleasant views on to the confining historic building and maximum exposure of the interiors through the alternation of negative and positive generated by the terraces. The balconies that surround a small interior garden offer privacy and continuity with the interior environment.