Launch Slideshow

ontario 301, washington, d.c.

architectural interiors / grand

ontario 301, washington, d.c.

architectural interiors / grand

  • The living room is oriented toward views of the Potomac River and Key Bridge.

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    The living room is oriented toward views of the Potomac River and Key Bridge.

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    Paul Warchol

    The living room is oriented toward views of the Potomac River and Key Bridge.

  • A V-shaped charcoal wall separates the kitchen/living area and the master bedroom behind it.

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    A V-shaped charcoal wall separates the kitchen/living area and the master bedroom behind it.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A V-shaped charcoal wall separates the kitchen/living area and the master bedroom behind it.

  • A walnut wall panel with ribbed graining unifies the living room, kitchen, and wine room beyond.

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    A walnut wall panel with ribbed graining unifies the living room, kitchen, and wine room beyond.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A walnut wall panel with ribbed graining unifies the living room, kitchen, and wine room beyond.

  • An electrostatic glass ribbon in the V-shaped wall can go opaque or clear, giving a sense of the space beyond.

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    An electrostatic glass ribbon in the V-shaped wall can go opaque or clear, giving a sense of the space beyond.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    An electrostatic glass ribbon in the V-shaped wall can go opaque or clear, giving a sense of the space beyond.

  • Project plan before.

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    Project plan before.

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney

    Project plan before.

  • Project plan after.

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    Project plan after.

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney

    Project plan after.

  • Axonometric projection.

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    Axonometric projection.

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney

    Axonometric projection.

  • The wine room, in an alcove behind the kitchen, is fitted with a translucent panel lit from above and behind. The bottles rest on aluminum rods.

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    The wine room, in an alcove behind the kitchen, is fitted with a translucent panel lit from above and behind. The bottles rest on aluminum rods.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    The wine room, in an alcove behind the kitchen, is fitted with a translucent panel lit from above and behind. The bottles rest on aluminum rods.

  • Bursts of color and floor-to-ceiling glass minimizes the pre-existing low, horizontal environment.

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    Bursts of color and floor-to-ceiling glass minimizes the pre-existing low, horizontal environment.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    Bursts of color and floor-to-ceiling glass minimizes the pre-existing low, horizontal environment.

  • A built-in desk in the master suite makes the most of limited space.

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    A built-in desk in the master suite makes the most of limited space.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A built-in desk in the master suite makes the most of limited space.

  • Throughout the apartment, clear and translucent glass unifies and defines the flowing floor plan.

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    Throughout the apartment, clear and translucent glass unifies and defines the flowing floor plan.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    Throughout the apartment, clear and translucent glass unifies and defines the flowing floor plan.

  • Planar walls bring formal clarity to the plan.

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    Planar walls bring formal clarity to the plan.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    Planar walls bring formal clarity to the plan.

  • The home's stately, Second-Empire-style street elevation is barely changed.

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    The home's stately, Second-Empire-style street elevation is barely changed.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    The home's stately, Second Empire–style street elevation is barely changed.

  • Gurney enlarged the 1876 home's rooms to better suit them to the client's modern art collection. He kept the original woodwork profiles within the existing footprint.

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    Gurney enlarged the 1876 home's rooms to better suit them to the client's modern art collection. He kept the original woodwork profiles within the existing footprint.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    Gurney enlarged the 1876 home's rooms to better suit them to the client's modern art collection. He kept the original woodwork profiles within the existing footprint.

  • A new kitchen added onto the back of the house received modern detailing, distinguishing it from the older portions of the building.

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    A new kitchen added onto the back of the house received modern detailing, distinguishing it from the older portions of the building.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A new kitchen added onto the back of the house received modern detailing, distinguishing it from the older portions of the building.

  • The sleek addition vastly improves the project's connection with its rear yard.

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    The sleek addition vastly improves the project's connection with its rear yard.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    The sleek addition vastly improves the project's connection with its rear yard.

  • The architects saved a couple of the original fireplaces and had them faithfully restored.

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    The architects saved a couple of the original fireplaces and had them faithfully restored.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    The architects saved a couple of the original fireplaces and had them faithfully restored.

  • A modern, marble-and-steel master bath.

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    A modern, marble-and-steel master bath.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A modern, marble-and-steel master bath.

  • White walls and dark floors work with the specially designed lighting to show off the art to its best advantage.

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    White walls and dark floors work with the specially designed lighting to show off the art to its best advantage.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    White walls and dark floors work with the specially designed lighting to show off the art to its best advantage.

  • Floor plans of the house before renovation.

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    Floor plans of the house before renovation.

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney

    Floor plans of the house before renovation.

  • Floor plans of the house after renovation.

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    Floor plans of the house after renovation.

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney

    Floor plans of the house after renovation.

  • http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmpC5A1%2Etmp_tcm48-275397.jpg

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    In the kitchen, two sliding laminated-glass panels hide doublehung windows.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A limited palette of seamless materials give this apartment an orderly coherence.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney, FAIA

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    Courtesy Robert M. Gurney, FAIA

    After

  • http://www.residentialarchitect.com/Images/tmpC598%2Etmp_tcm48-275383.jpg

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

    A limited palette of seamless materials give this apartment an orderly coherence. The fireplace wall is fitted with an 8-foot aluminum panel that conceals a TV.

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    Maxwell MacKenzie

robert m. gurney, faia, alexandria, va.

When it came time to liberate her dark, disorienting apartment in a Beaux-Arts building, this client—a psychiatrist—prescribed an orderly, austere environment, perhaps as an antidote to the daily hazards of her practice. For Robert M. Gurney, FAIA, that meant stripping it to the structure and stacks. The new living spaces are strikingly clear-minded, thanks to a linear floor plan and a reductive palette of white walls, aluminum accents, stainless steel countertops, translucent-glass room dividers, limestone floors, and wenge paneling and cabinetry.

Rather than being cold and clinical, however, the apartment glows with light. A floating translucent-glass panel at one end of the living area and three panels at the other diffuse the intense natural light and add a sense of mystery about what lies beyond. In order to visually connect the entry and kitchen, Gurney designed a curved ceiling plane that also hides the obligatory ductwork.

The jury applauded the consistent, comprehensive interior. “The details are elegant, and a common thread runs through them,” said one judge. “It's integrated perfectly.” Gurney says his client's program inspired the everything-in-perfect-place-all-the-time look. “The apartment looks like the photo every day,” he says.

principal in charge: Robert M. Gurney, FAIA
project architect: Brian Tuskey, Robert M. Gurney, FAIA
general contractor: Richard Hazboun, Added Dimensions, Takoma Park, Md.
interior designer: Thérèse Baron Gurney, ASID, Baron Gurney Interiors, Washington, D.C.
project size: 1,800 square feet
construction cost: Withheld
photography: Maxwell MacKenzie