Gunnar Asplund, Summer house, Stennäs, Sweden, 1937
Gunnar Asplund, Summer house, Stennäs, Sweden, 1937 (view from google)
Asplund’s private summer house at Stennas ,Hastnasviken, Lison, 50 kilometers south of Stockholm reflects coziness and simplicity. The design expresses a friendly and open atmosphere with its back resting on a cliff and front overlooking the bay.
Following the main entrance from the wooden intimate deck you find the social spaces connecting the exterior and interior. The interior spaces have been skilfully divided into smaller ones that generate intimacy and coziness, whilst capturing incredible views of the Swedish forest and bay. One of the most beautiful parts of Erik Gunnar Asplund’s summer home is the wide tiled red staircase in connection with the vernacular fireplace. Set in the biggest room of the house, the drawing room, it separates this end of the home from the core of the house which contains the dinning room, followed by the kids’ rooms and ending at the opposite end with the kitchen and maid’s room. With the setting of the rooms Asplund is keeping a functionalist style where work and leisure are totally separate. The stone paved paths, the views of the bay and touch of the forest, the huge contrast between the insertion itself and the natural ambiance tells a story of an open friendly family and of beautiful evenings enjoying the beauty of nature and of warm cozy nights by the fire. The house seems to be orientated strangely towards the evening light and his exterior facades have been treated with a more elegant care for details in contrast tot the uneven rough ceiling of the interior spaces, thus reflecting an important exteriorization and prioritization of nature’s impact on the daily life. In the end, this simple cottage-like home is perfectly inserted into the surrounding site, being a reflection of an era where styles merged and emerged daily. The design result is one of pure elegance and warmth. Looking from the cliff over the house and bay you can admire the perfect integration of the home into the landscape, its elongation towards the shimmering light and exposure to the near forest. Overall, a Scandinavian design with a modern twist and respect for nature.
Alexandra Niedermayr, Alexandre Maurel, Martin Charachon, Sonja Schneider (March 2017)