HOUSEofCARDS, Arnaudville – e-architect

HOUSEofCARDS, Louisiana Real Estate, USA Artist Retreat, American Folly, Architecture Photos

November 6, 2022

Design: UL Building Institute

Location: Arnaudville, Louisiana, United States

Photos courtesy of Chad Chenier

HOUSEofCARDS, Louisiana

The CARD CASTLE is a design/build project in Arnaudville, Louisiana. The project was conceived as a splurge on rural land and serves as an artist’s retreat for a non-profit community organization.

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville Louisiana

The concept is that of a 16’x16′ freestanding Thoreau cabin on a Cajun Walden pond. Concrete was chosen as the main material for its longevity and durability.

HOUSEofCARDS Louisiana

HOUSEofCARDS Louisiana

In this way and on this small scale, concrete is a durable material because it will not require maintenance and will last indefinitely. Twenty-nine third-year and graduate architecture students designed and built the HOUSEofCARDS over two semesters. The concrete was mixed in small batches on site and poured in 12-inch increments. The 10″ thick walls are insulated in the middle with 2″ polyisocyanurate foam insulation providing a vapor barrier and thermal break.

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville Louisiana

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville Louisiana

The walls were stained the color of the earth to blend in with the site and contextually textured with plank formwork salvaged from a barn dismantled on site. The walls lean at 8 degrees against each other on the angles like a house of cards achieving forced perspectives and changes of scale. Paradoxically, even if the structure is heavy and monolithic, the vast windows and skylights imbue the space with lightness as if it had been built with giant hands from a deck of cards.

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville Louisiana

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville Louisiana

Polished concrete floors and reclaimed pine butcher block counters and desk provide a relaxing space for artists and scholars to produce their work. The building has water from a well, electricity from a planned solar panel, a mini-split heat pump and a compost toilet ensuring self-sufficiency.

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville

In addition to hands-on experience with material properties and processes, students gain expertise in client and consultant relations, coordination of subcontractors, budgeting, and planning. Within this small rural outpost, solitude and community come together.

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville

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Project sponsored by Absolute Concrete Polishing, ADG Engineering, Air Plus, Alchemco, American Institute of Architects – South Louisiana Chapter, Armentor Glass, Associated General Contractors – Construction Educational Trust Fund, Atchafalaya National Heritage Area, Billeaud Companies, Construction Specifications Institute – Acadiana Chapter , Dave’s Screen and Window, Delehoussaye Company, Distribution International, Doug Ashy Building Materials, Enterprise Data Concepts, Event Solutions, Grace Hebert Curtis Architects, Gulf Coast Air Systems, Holly and Smith Architects, Iberia Rental, JB Mouton Builders, Lambright Construction, Mapei , Metal Head Architectural Metalwork, Oge’s Rent-All Center, Peppers Unlimited, Ramier Architects, Randall J. Hebert & Associates, The Gen Group Construction and White Cap.

HOUSEofCARDS Arnaudville

Photograph courtesy of Chad Chenier

HOUSEofCARDS, Arnaudville images / information received 061122 from UL Building Institute

Location: Arnaudville, Louisiana, United States of America

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