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Brennan Patio - Cloverdale, CA 2001

My father and I designed and built this patio/trellis for Alice Brennan. It uses sustainably harvested redwood (Berry's Sawmill, Cazadero, CA), terrazo caps on the columns bases, and slate tile on the ground.
The simple goal, actually pretty hard to achieve, was to make a really comfortable place to be; that provided Alice with a beautiful, shady retreat from the brutal summer sun of Cloverdale.
The rear of ALic'es house before we started. The building codes for her development dictated that we could not actually touch her house with new construction.
My sketch as apporved by the Design Review Committee. At that point I had a vision of including leaded glass panels between the columns.
There's Alice sitting in her almost completed patio.
I wanted each pair of columns to work together to become a single element, a sort of 'being' - perhaps somewhat anthropomorphic. I think on mostly unconscious levels we relate to things that seem a little like ourselves.
I was able to build it such that no metal connecters are visible, but it is very, very strong. I hope it lasts a long time.
Here is a picture form the construction process - compacting the gravel underbed for the slab.
My father woring on the terrazo caps. They came out great and I'm really sorry I don't have a good picture of them. Coming soon.
A detail from my sketchbook - working out the dimensions and shapes of the beam and column connections.
One of my rough sketches, made on site during construction, working out the design of the corner column clusters. Unifying the design and construction process allows one to make much better decisions, informed by the actual material reality of the porcess.

© 2006, Demetrius González. All rights reserved.