Sagg Farm residence, on the East End of Long Island, takes its cues from the aerial historical maps in this former farming community. In particular, it is inspired by the pattern of crops growing in long rows, exposed on all sides to the elixir of light and air. “There was always this kind of north-south grain as you drove through these very flat fields,” says Paul Masi, AIA. “As we looked at the historical maps, we picked up on how there are linear rows, and within that organization you have these very organic plants. We liked the fact that if we broke up the landscape of the house, we could bring sunlight and fresh air inside and organize it programmatically.”
It became, too, an exploration into different levels of transparency. The plan is organized around three two-story bars running north-south and linked by breezeways with operable glazing, a move that breaks up the house’s mass. It also provided an opportunity to create outdoor rooms and a soft veil between the buildings.
To control privacy, the team designed a cedar rainscreen, a riff on crop rows, whose quirky execution gives the house an ephemeral quality. “Looking at how each crop row was kind of wild, we fastened strips of green wood with two screws in the center, so the unfastened ends are free to warp with the grain direction, creating an organic pattern within the rigid framework,” Paul says.
The three-story stairwell at the center of the house is a variation on this theme. Enclosed in glass on three sides, its balustrades are made of felt clamped between two boards to control acoustics. The boards are mounted on dowels that spin in the wind or when touched.
Says Paul: “Not only does the diagram of the building tell the story [of the land], but it also translates down into the details.”
Bates Masi + Architects
Sagaponack, New York
Architect: Paul Masi, AIA, principal in charge; Katherine Dalene Weil; Emily Ko; Xiao Lin, Bates Masi + Architects, East Hampton, New York
Builder: Lettieri Construction, Westhampton, New York
Interior Designer: Bates Masi + Architects
Project size: 11,695 square feet
Site Size: 2 acres
Construction cost: Withheld
Photography: Bates Masi + Architects
Cabinetry Hardware: Blum
Fireplace: Spark Fireplace
Kitchen Appliances: Gaggenau
Lighting Control/Window Shading: Lutron
Outdoor grill: Wolf
Paints/stains/coatings: Benjamin Moore
Sinks: Franke, Kohler
Vent Hood: Miele
Wine Refrigerator: Uline