Architectural firm Arches has recently created a contemporary, eco-friendly villa within close proximity to Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania and the country’s largest city. Clad in 650m² of sustainable Kebony wood, this unique property has been built to complement the scenery, with natural timber cladding and irregular pitched roofs, characteristic of the neighbouring surroundings and in harmony with the hillsides and pine trees. The villa strikes the perfect balance with an architectural style that is simultaneously modern and traditional.
The clean, angular design creates a minimalist exterior with Kebony as the prime material contrasting against the black slate at the building’s base. Architect, Arūnas Liola, aimed to design a structure that is both ecologically friendly and striking in appearance, interweaving natural materials with a bold sculptural form. The firm has frequently chosen to work with Kebony due to the fact that it is a natural material but with the resistance to stand up to testing conditions far better than softwood. The quality of the wood, and through the skills of an exceptional carpenter, meant the timber could be sculpted and worked with easily for this particular project. Kebony requires no additional treatment even when used as an external cladding, the material simply develops a silver-grey patina which will allow the house to adapt naturally to its surroundings over a period of time.
The patented Kebony technology is an environmentally friendly process, which modifies sustainably sourced softwoods by heating the wood with furfuryl alcohol – an agricultural by-product. By polymerising the wood’s cell wall, the softwoods permanently take on the attributes of tropical hardwood including high durability, hardness and dimensional stability, without the need for tropical deforestation, resulting in a high performing, beautiful wood product.
Arūnas Liola, Architect at Arches commented: “Every time we use Kebony we learn more and more about its creative capabilities, the possibilities are endless. It is the perfect sustainable, natural and multi-purpose material for our designs, always providing an impressive final product with a striking and natural appearance.”
Gytis Korzinskas of HOTA, Kebony’s distributor in the Baltics added: “This is a remarkable project and it has been fascinating to see how such a modern architectural triumph has integrated itself beautifully into its surroundings. We at Kebony are so pleased to have been involved in such a project, and look forward to seeing what the team at Arches can design next.”