The Red House

Location Denver, Colorado
Design Principal Jim Olson

This house and courtyard occupy an interior lot in Denver's LoDo (Lower Downtown) area. The owners, proficient art collectors, moved from the suburbs to this redeveloping warehouse district out of commitment to urban living and pride in their city. Their allegiance to art and urbanism guided the design, which explores the relationship of art, community, scale, and time. It is at once a museum, a home, and a response to urban context.

In plan and elevation, the house emulates the ordered city grid and its alternation of solids and voids. The program is organized by levels: first floor as public gallery (museum); second floor as private living (nest); and the third floor as the spiritual space (sanctuary).

The art and architecture embody strong historical content. The building’s massing, articulation, and use of the red color of the Indian sandstone relate it to the historic district formally and materially. The result is a contemporary urban residence that blends both home and museum into a contextually sensitive design.

Interior design by Terry Hunziker.

Information

Team

Design Principal

Jim Olson

Awards

2000

AIA Summit 2000 Western International Design Awards, Merit Award

1999

AIA Northwest and Pacific Region Honor Awards, Honor Award

1998

AIA Northwest and Pacific Region Honor Awards, Honor Award

Publications

2007

Finkel, Jori. “The Right Setting.” Town & Country, May 2007, 101-104. Print.

2004

“Merging divergent styles.” Departures, May 2004, 183. Print.

2003

Codrington, Andrea. “Art in residence.” BLOUIN ARTINFO: Art + Auction, Sept. 2003, 88-89. Print.

2002

Mitchell, Karen. “Art by the Yard.”  Rocky Mountain News, 27 July 2002, 5F, 5E. Print. Web.

Woo, Youngmin. “Red House.” Haute, Oct., 2002, 74-81. Print.

1998

Brooke, James. “Denver Stands Out in Trend Toward Living in Downtown.” The New York Times, 29 Dec. 1998, A1, A10. Print.

Hill, David. “Downtown Denver gets an upscale house—a live-in museum of sorts.” Architectural Record, March 1998, 42. Print.

Rawlings, Irene. “Going to town.” Art & Antiques, Nov. 1998, 74-81. Print.

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