Meridian Residence, (2,300 sf) located in the Highland Park neighborhood of Los Angeles, and directly behind the owner's art studio and gallery, Moryork. Moryork Gallery is a widely published space with a collection of artwork and curiosities that also provides space for live shows of all kinds.
Inspired by the Japanese Kura (storehouse behind a residence that holds a family’s precious commodities), the typology is inverted so the house becomes the kura to the gallery and a showcase for their most personal art, objects and furniture.
As a result, traditional residential organization is upended with the visitor's entry at the rear of the site and adjacent to Moryork. This entry through a 12’ steel fence leads to exterior patios and glazed rooms full of art that also function as entertaining spaces. All bedrooms and private spaces are opposite this entry and toward the street.
The site is a series of connected blocks distributed across the site that become the building, carve into the ground and become exterior voids the house is organized around. Front-to-back the 4 blocks are the 1-story garage, 2-story private areas, Kitchen and 1.5-story Living Room/Gallery. Setting the Living Room/Gallery 5’ lower at the rear puts finish floor the same as Moryork and allows unobstructed views throughout.
Landscape design provides a varied collection of color, textures and forms set within poured-in-place concrete planters that connect the front to rear. A series of natural concrete retaining walls, patios and stairs define exterior spaces that are extensions of the interior. Additional varieties of plants are in the owners' extensive collection of pottery that come in many shapes, sizes and colors.
The material palette is a carefully selected array of gray and black ceramic tile, cast-concrete, concrete pavers, natural steel and stucco that are all in contrast with naturally stained wood trusses.
Finally, as a way of connecting the house to the legacy of the Moryork property there were several items repurposed throughout. The woven steel mesh panels used in the 12' steel fence were originally used as security barriers on the building's skylights. The pendant light globes were used when the building was a grocery store, and have been in storage for almost 40 years.
Credits: - SBLA - Landscape Architect - Stephen Billings - Oregon Construction - General Contractor - Porfirio Oregon - Bricy Company - Structural Engineer - Henreik Tan - Bay City Geology - Geotechnical Engineering - Jonathan Miller