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Mexican dwelling: playing with contrasting materials and surfaces

Congregación 341 in the Mexican city of Santiago de Querétaro is a case in point of interacting material and surfaces: on the outside it is clad in two types of fair-faced concrete and inside it has two types of stone with a single surface finish. Juan Carlos Kelly and Paulina Moreno of Laboratorio de Arquitectura were the architects responsible.

The outer siding is an eye-catcher with its surface structured concrete blocks (left).

The outer siding is an eye-catcher with its surface structured concrete blocks (left). „Fluted split-face concrete“ is the technical term. Its black color contrasts nicely with the whitewashed rest of the outer surface of the building and with the wooden sunscreen lamellae.

The concrete blocks make a repeat appearance on the inside, e.g. on the walls of the bedroom.

The concrete blocks make a repeat appearance on the inside, e.g. on the walls of the bedroom where the lighting interacts with the surfaces.

Travertine was the material of choice for the bathroom.

Travertine was the material of choice for the bathroom where analogous to parquet flooring, natural stone tiles were chosen.

Marble defines the kitchen area with its open kitchen counter.

Marble defines the kitchen area with its open kitchen counter. The color and the veins of the stone stand in contrast to the rest of the room.

Stone crops up in another area as well (not shown on our photo): from the vantage point of the top floor, one has a view of the pebble-covered roof top terrace. Its surface is meant „to give this fifth façade more of a contemplative air“, as Paulina Moreno writes.

The blueprints show the relation of the building bodies to one another.

The blueprints show the relation of the building bodies to one another.

Laboratorio de Arquitectura

Photos: Karen Almaraz

Laboratorio de Arquitectura: Congregación 341.

(28.02.2015, USA: 02.28.2015)