the project

  • A carport sits in front of the house, sheltering it and screening it from the street. Private and public zones divide east and west. The simple entry hall sets the stage for the dramatic living room views, with the living room two steps below both entry and dining areas. [wli]
  • The open concrete block wall of the carport provides a semi-permeable screen the serves as a strong horizontal to ground this structure into the site. A central chimney marks the point of entry and serves as a punctuation mark for the scheme. [pll]
  • The rear elevation of the structure incorporates full-light sliding doors in the dining room and fixed glass windows in the living room to draw interior to exterior. [wli]
  • Simple materials – vertical wood siding, concrete block, asphalt shingle – all give the vocabulary of a modern approach to design for this 1,500 square foot residence. [pll]
  • On the east elevation, a screened door and louvered detailing in the gable both provide evidence of an air handling system for cross-ventilation in the structure. Hopper windows provide an additional means for bringing air into the house. [pll]
  • On open terrace steps down from the dining room sliding glass doors into the yard, providing outdoor living space adjacent to the home. [pll]
  • Banked and stacked horizontal hopper windows contrast to the vertical siding, providing a balance in design features on the west end of the house. [pll]
  • The living room sits 12” below the dining room, entrance hall, and kitchen. A large fireplace anchors the open arrangement of the living and dining areas. [pll]
  • Clerestory windows in the dining room bring another method of lighting into the space. A warm-brick wall brings an exterior material into the interior, blurring the boundary between inside/outside. [pll]
  • A long hallway lined with built-in closets and shelves connects the public and private portions of the scheme. A recessed bay for a piano was provided in the original scheme. [pll]
  • The original kitchen countertops, with an atomic-age pattern, remain in place with an opening to the “activities room” as labeled on the floor plan. [pll]
  • A flyer celebrating the 1959 Commencement House reminds that students at Woman’s College designed the structure, built by the Superior Construction Company. [jll]

Keneth P + Marion Hinsdale Residence
Greensboro (1959)

Built on speculation as a Commencement House and located on Rockford Road in Irving Park, this 1959 house had a modest budget of $24,000 and sold within months of its completion. In the scheme, Loewenstein and the students considered family activity zones, a step saving traffic pattern, visual spaciousness beyond actual square footage, easy maintenance, dramatic lighting, and climate conditioning (through a central attic fan and well placed window and door openings). Students divided the one story house into public and private zones, connecting the cozy dining room and theatrical living room to a lake view out a large glass wall. The private part of the house included three bedrooms and two and one-half baths, ample storage, and a dressing room in the master suite. Throughout, students wove texture and color to create a restful setting, with natural red brick walls in the public rooms, and richly grained walnut furniture, upholstered in black, brown, and cream to impart an interplay of textures, underscored by layered textiles. Duke Power company rated the structure a “Gold Medallion Home.”

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