At Large  September 27, 2019  Jeremy Howell

The Most Extraordinary Homes of the Last Century

Phaidon, © Sergio Pirrone

Till House, 2014, Navidad, Chile, WMR Arquitectos.

The editors at Phaidon publishing have released a new book that chronicles the dramatic developments in home design during the 20th century. Houses: Extraordinary Living showcases 400 houses by some of the world's greatest architects.

Below is a look at just a few of the incredible homes you will find in Houses.

The House On The Cliff, 2015, Granada, Spain, Gilbartolome Architects. Picture credit: Jesus Granada
Phaidon, Jesus Granada

The House On The Cliff, 2015, Granada, Spain, Gilbartolome Architects.

This wave-like home is embedded within a cliff face. The home uses the earth as a natural insulator, which keeps the structure at a consistent 67 degrees Fahrenheit. Local artisans were used for much of the home's construction.

Bubble Palace, 1989, Théoule-sur-Mer, France, Antti Lovag. Picture credit: © Yves Gellie for The Maison Bernard Endowment Fund
Phaidon, © Yves Gellie for The Maison Bernard Endowment Fund

Bubble Palace, 1989, Théoule-sur-Mer, France, Antti Lovag.

This home was designed under its architect's philosophy of "habitology," which called for the ban of right angles and straight lines. The architect argued that circles and curves mirrored the natural world and thus made for better living spaces.

A House For Essex, 2015, Essex, England, UK, FAT & Grayson Perry. Picture credit: Jack Hobhouse/Living Architecture
Phaidon, Jack Hobhouse/Living Architecture

A House For Essex, 2015, Essex, England, UK, FAT & Grayson Perry.

Russian stave churches inspired this home. The exterior is covered in 2000 tiles, and its roof features sculptures by the architect. The home's large windows offer views of the nearby Stour Estuary. 

Graham House, 1962, West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Arthur Erickson. Picture credit: Ezra Stoller/Esto, Courtesy F2 Architecture
Phaidon, Ezra Stoller/Esto, Courtesy F2 Architecture

Graham House, 1962, West Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, Arthur Erickson.

This incredible home was unfortunately torn down in 2007. The architect creatively solved the issue of building this home on a cliff by having the home's levels slope down with the landscape.

Dragspel House, 2004, Smolmark, Sweden, Natrufied Architecture. Picture credit: © Christian Richters
Phaidon, © Christian Richters

Dragspel House, 2004, Smolmark, Sweden, Natrufied Architecture.

In Swedish, the name of this home,"Dragspel," means "accordion." The home's name is a reference to the red cedarwood folds that comprise part of the building. The accordion-like structure was an addition to a 19th-century cabin. 

Sipeki Balás Villa, 1905, Budapest, Hungary, Ödön Lechner. Picture credit: Bernard O’Kane/Alamy Stock Photo
Phaidon, Bernard O’Kane/Alamy Stock Photo

Sipeki Balás Villa, 1905, Budapest, Hungary, Ödön Lechner.

The architect who designed this home was credited for creating the Hungarian national style. The home features a glass conservatory that sticks out of the home's pink ornamental facade.

The Red House, 2002, Oslo, Norway, Jarmund/Vigsnæs Arkitekter. Picture credit: Nils Petter Dale
Phadion, Nils Petter Dale

The Red House, 2002, Oslo, Norway, Jarmund/Vigsnæs Arkitekter.

The architects of this home claimed that its striking red color was inspired by their client's temperament. The home was aligned perpendicularly to a nearby river in order to avoid blocking the views of nearby homes.

Edgeland House, 2012, Austin, Texas, USA, Bercy Chen Studio. Picture credit: Photo: Paul Bardagjy
Phaidon, Paul Bardagjy

Edgeland House, 2012, Austin, Texas, USA, Bercy Chen Studio.

This home's design was intended to help "heal" the surrounding land that had become highly developed. The architects were inspired by Native American pit houses. After completing the home, forty indigenous wildflowers were reintroduced at the site.

About the Author

Jeremy Howell

Jeremy Howell is the Co-Founder and Editor of Art & Object. 

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