Low impact, high elevation desert house from Anderson Anderson
Designed for an anthropologist and a concert pianist, this small prefabricated house on a desert site fronting the Rio Chama, not far from Georgia O’Keefe’s famous home on the bluff above, employs simple detailing and standard industrial materials.
The owners have a number of animals - dogs, cats, goats, chickens - requiring protection from the local hawks, eagles, coyotes, and rattlesnakes. Wire mesh screen walls protect domestic animals and people from wild animals and from accidental falls from the upper terraces.
In some places the mesh stands away from the house, providing enclosure to exterior living spaces, and in other areas it hugs tight to the steel wall surfaces, providing visual light and shadow textural depth and support for creeping plants growing up from the ground below. Fabricated offsite to minimize site disturbance, the house becomes part of delicate high desert ecosystem.