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As a keen wildlife photographer, the client’s goal was to create a home that sat patiently and alert with its eye trained on the native flora and fauna.

Location: Tucson, Arizona

Year Completed: 2020

Square Footage: 4,000 sq ft

Contractor: Archerland LLC

Photographer: Logan Havens

TS Falls West Residence

This home was designed for an avid wildlife photographer relocating from New York to the Arizona desert. The project takes inspiration from the simple shapes of sheltering sheds common in the ranching vernacular and is rendered with local materials of board-formed concrete, rusting steel, and burnished plaster. Imagined as a hunting blind, the form provides prospect and refuge, while the plan acts like a sighting scope-each leg of its bent ‘H’ shape connects to the powerful peaks in the landscape.

In this house, it’s not unusual to find bobcats and mountain lions lounging by the pool or javelina nose prints on the kitchen backsplash, all of which are signs of a successful effort to share the home with all that is the desert. But one would not expect to see koi swimming in the desert. 

Conceptually, the design team began with two simple shed buildings to contain the program and then explored their ideal site placement and orientation. As they slipped and slid those shapes around the 40 acres, they began to settle into a specific location and orientation, which was driven by sun and sight lines. 

The clients’ passion for wildlife photography necessitated spaces for shelter that provided both refuge and prospect. The apertures were considered and refined to deliberately focus on the forces of nature and geology. 

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