Canvas House by architecture studio Partisans stands out in the Forest Hill neighborhood of Toronto with its unique design and purpose. Serving as both a residence and a showcase for contemporary art, this house is a true embodiment of the stunning artworks it houses.
Unlike the symmetrical and conventional Georgian homes that surround it, Canvas House boasts a monochromatic undulating brick façade that adds a touch of modernity to the area. The rhythmic pattern of the bricks is not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional, as it forms an overhang above the door and allows natural light to flood in through the second-floor skylight.
The design of Canvas House by Partisans is a testament to the owner’s love for theater production. The unscripted yet carefully arranged movement of the bricks resembles the graceful motions of a theater drape, paying homage to the client’s background. By exploring the possibilities of brick as a resonant form, this house showcases the organic and orderly nature of the material.
The facade’s pattern, inspired by Larry Poons’ early works, is achieved through a repeating unit of five bricks. The use of individually improvised corbel variations adds a touch of visual interest, highlighting the brick’s elegance without relying on traditional forms.
Step inside Canvas House, and you’ll be greeted by a play of light and shadow that creates a sense of depth. The organic design of the exterior seamlessly transitions into the interior, with gently curved walls blending harmoniously with the ceilings and architectural fixtures.
Even the door handles and handrails are carved from the walls, adding to the interior’s dimensionality and emphasizing the integration of light. The result is a serene and contemplative space, perfectly suited to house a captivating collection of contemporary art.