As the harsh landscape of Almería, Spain, dominates the region with its distinctive vegetation, it is no wonder that Casa Gallarda would literally shine on top of the hill. Architect José Francisco García-Sánchez not only made the best use of the unique topography, but also played with the observer’s perception of weight and proportion. The white volume is a magnificent mix of the right kind of austerity and efficiency in this coastal town.
Three kinds of minimalism are found on this unique dwelling, as each volume responds to a different function and visual identity. The small addition made primarily of cement is the complement to the kitchen with its service area. The main volume houses the two heroes of this plot though. On the ground level, the glass house is responsible for the main social area; the living room is the heart of the house as it maintains an open dialogue with the countryside and sea view.
The inversion from a small foundation to a grand volume is a technical achievement; technically and aesthetically. The main volume houses the private area, with a modernist cube as an absolute presence. Casa Gallarda does not renounce its structure; it proudly owns it as its main visual draw. A true sculpture as form becomes the precise answer to an unruly landscape all around.
Photography courtesy of Estúdio JFGS.