Sunday, June 19, 2011

Divided Great Rooms?

Excellent example of a Great Room that is spatially divided  

Excellent example of a Great Room that is spatially divided and yet open

In recent articles I’ve described a Great Room as a large room containg smaller functional spaces such as kitchen, informal eating and sitting area.  Here is a great example, designed by local artist Louie Rochon, of a great room with clear divisions.  Here the great room consists of the kitchen, informal entertainment eating, daily eating, TV/sitting area and the main hall.  In spite of the fact that it undivided by walls and completely open it is still spatially divided using means other than walls.

Flooring - The 3 main divisions are first made by changes in flooring materials.  The hall has wood flooring, the sitting area has carpet and the kitchen/dining area has stone.

Ceiling - The kitchen is defined by the lighted wood coffer.  The sitting area is divided both by the wood “beam” element and also by the higher ceiling in that area.

Walls - The bump-out of the exterior walls provides additional definition for the informal eating area.  There is a small corner wall between the eating and sitting areas that doesn’t close the rooms off but does provide each room a “corner” which substantially adds to the spatial definition.  Finally the sitting area has the built-ins and wood paneling theme suggested by the columns.

Columns - This is the only real physical seperation between the spaces.  They are massive enough to communicate seperation yet far enough apart to keep the space open.  The one column at the intersection of the kitchen, hall and sitting area provides the fouth “corner”  of the sitting area.

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