A compact home’s rhythmic facade and daylight-drenched interiors create a connection to nature.
After buying property in Carrboro, North Carolina, Anantha and Leigh Aiyyer approached CUBE design + research to create a home that reflected their passions. Anantha, a professor who studies hurricanes, and his wife Leigh, a harpist, share a love of music and nature. “We carefully wove the building site into the forest,” says architect Jason W. Hart. “The result is a small home that lives big.” The single-level, 1,750-square-foot residence comprises three rectangular volumes positioned around a central entry axis. Its exterior fuses red, ribbed Galvalume metal and acid-washed zinc that evoke the surrounding trees. Wood cabinetry warms the open-plan interior, which is filled with the Aiyyers’ splendid midcentury furniture collection. Sustainable elements like geothermal heating and cooling systems keep water and energy needs low. Strategically placed windows provide natural light in every room, eliminating the need for artificial lights during the day. In the bedroom, skylights outfitted with operable blackout shades invite the couple watch the sky for hours on end.