the project

  • The preliminary floor plan shows the firm’s intention to expand the reach of this house onto its site, providing outdoor spaces south of the living room and a pool to the north end of the house. A den and guest-room suite extend the building to the south in an ell perpendicular to the street. [wli]
  • The 3,000-square-foot final floor plan for the house illustrates the more compact. approved plan, where the south wing has been folded into the main mass of the house and where a north wing extends its reach further into the site, though eliminating the pool and pool terrace. [wli]
  • From the street, the Bertling house slips quietly across the landscape, a horizontal underscoring of the wooded site. Loewenstein introduces openings on façades other than the front elevation, leaving passersby to speculate about the closed nature of the house from its exterior appearance. [pll]
  • A circular driveway passes through the garage with openings on both the front façade as well as the service yard side of the dwelling. [pll]
  • Exposed beams in the ceilings of the public rooms give a sense of openness to the home. A screened porch opens off the living room provides a room outside and connects inside to outside. Well-placed windows capture landscape views and further make fluid interior-exterior divisions. [ctb]
  • South-facing clerestory windows allow light to sweep into the living and dining room spaces, supplementing the window wall at the east end of the room. The richly hued walnut paneling supplements the warmth of the pink-toned brick and the honey-colored wood floor, all tying the building to the natural environment. [ctb]
  • Three distinct, brightly-colored tile bathrooms show the ingenuity of the Loewenstein office, providing the latest in bathroom cabinetry, a beveled sink mirror that raises to the ceiling to reveal the shelves behind. [pll]
  • Corrugated plastic sheeting on the roof of the screened porch helps weave new materials and technologies into the scheme alongside more traditional materials. The translucent roof allows light to penetrate the depth of the screened porch into the large glass wall of the living room to the west. [pll]

Marion + Eleanor Bertling Residence
Greensboro (1953)

The Bertling Residence, entirely surrounded by trees on a wooded site, offers privacy and a merging of building and landscape, underscored by a handsome soft-red brick exterior and the presence of a large screen porch at the rear. The interior features the gently hued brick (a means to carry the outside in) and a massive built-in cabinet that fills one entire wall of the dining room, providing a colorful, glass-fronted storage system for china and a divider for the more private family room at its back side. In welcoming the Bertlings to the neighborhood, nearly three-dozen nearby residents signed a petition of support in the construction of a Modernist dwelling, flying in the face of the unwritten restrictions from the planning and zoning department to prohibit Modern structures in the Kirkwood neighborhood.

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modernism in greensboro
patrick lee lucas : school of interiors : university of kentucky : website designed by julie barghout