Fire Place at Carraig Ridge amplifies the conventional fire pit to create an inhabitable fireplace that functions as the hearth to the surrounding hills. Perched on the shore of Anna Lake, a seven hectare (17 acre) enhanced natural wetland, the pavilion is simultaneously a landmark and a destination; it is a beacon hovering above the lake, but rooted in simplicity and connection to the surrounding landscape. Fire Place provides a gathering spot for residents of Carraig Ridge – a rural community that will, upon completion, feature 44 contemporary homes – to meet with neighbours, friends and family over roasted marshmallows and hot chocolate, or warm up during an afternoon of skating.
Fire Place is constructed of local lumber cut into lengths of 3 to 5 feet and stacked in six specific positions according to simple rules of rotation. This subtle twist is a playful interpretation of the traditional method of stacking logs, referencing the traditional log cabin while exaggerating texture for a contemporary result. This creates a thick surface that envelops the warmth of the fire and blocks wind, but allows light to slip through to the outside. Rather than isolating users, Fire Place provides moments of oblique views back to the landscape, framing their surroundings in unexpected ways.
The cubic envelope of Fire Place is softened by the texture of the raw wood and shards of polished metal that dematerialize the structure. The surrounding water, earth, and sky are juxtaposed on the surface of the built object, cloaking Fire Place’s abstract mass in an ethereal veil. This shelter balances clarity of form and construction technique with richness of texture, and creates a transformation from landscape to enclosure with minimal intervention.