The building sits on top of a wooded hillside, opposite the owner’s house, with views of two ponds. The owner’s program and directives on aesthetics were eclectic. As book collectors of note, they wanted a library. Associated with the library is an office and several storage spaces for books and graphics, as they run a small art book press and sell books to other collectors. The library is a place for entertaining while their clients look at books they are interested in purchasing.
The office is on the upper level with views from a deck down to the ponds. The main level includes the library and a suite for overnight guests which also has views of the ponds. A kitchen is for guests, but also for cleanup of dinners at the loggia. The lower level houses three garage bays, mechanical and firewood storage space, and a conditioned vault for books and documents for sale. Firewood is brought up into the library on a dumb waiter.
Aside from their interest in Italian antiquity, as evidenced in the 19th Century fireplace surround and columns built into the library, the owners wanted a building with a spare aesthetic, energy efficiency and a complete merging with the landscape. Windows of size are oriented southerly. Walls and roofs are insulated to values above R50, and while space conditioning of books was critical, the mechanical system addresses the varied needs of each space with individual humidification/dehumidification and operable windows. The copper trellis on the east side of the building will be taken over by climbing hydrangea framed with grasses. As in their broad collection of books and furnishings and notions about design, the landscape around the building is a highly eclectic assembly of plants.