The universal appeal of architecture 

Gain an insight into the architecture of Todd Saunders with a book illustrating how his buildings and ethos are making a gentle statement on both sides of the globe.

In a world where most buildings seem to be functional with little regard to aesthetics or the beauty of materials, architecture where design and function are intertwined appear like a work of art. This is the type of architecture celebrated in an impressive book featuring 11 projects by architect Todd Saunders.

'Saunders’ work is modern, original and sculputral, but it is – importantly – deeply in tune with the landscape’ Dominic Bradbury.

Todd now divides his projects between his country of birth Canada, and Norway which is home to him and the architectural practice he started in 1998. Although geographically miles apart, the similar climates and rugged terrain link the different continents both physically and culturally. Looking at the homes in this immersive study of Todd’s work this is apparent as you can’t tell which country each building is located in. Likewise, they would look equally as stunning anywhere in the world with similar natural landscapes.

As to be expected, this book is full of carefully considered ideas that are meticulously put into practice. It features Todd’s own home where functionality takes into account the wet weather of Norway’s Bergen. The town receives rainfall up to 250 days a year so Todd’s house is elevated. This provides a dry area where activities such as fixing bikes can be carried out while his children can play on swings. ‘The whole house became a tent sheltering these fresh-air spaces,’ he explains.

'There is a tradition here [in Norway] and in Canada of living in nature and using that as a way of recharging. Those ties between architecture, nature and the landscape are really important to me and they build on each other' Todd Saunders.

From the philosophy behind each build, to floor plans and breathtaking interior and exterior photographs, this hard-backed book takes an in depth look at all aspects of a project. Todd's work has magical quality that gives it a boldness yet feels as though it is nestled in nature. The photography is shot at the time of day when the light accentuates each design, and the text is both informative and engaging. 

Less is certainly more with Todd’s work, so if minimal clean lines don’t appeal, it’s probably not a book for you. However, if you love streamlined design and the interplay between landscapes and architecture, this book will take pride of place in your collection. 

Todd Saunders New Northern Houses, written by Dominic Bradbury and published by Thames & Hudson is available at ….

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