From the outside it is impossible to image what is waiting inside. A discrete wall of dusty pink stone sourced from a quarry in the nearby town of Santanyi hides Can Lis from the outside world. Using these local materials, Utzon created a seamless connection between the architecture and the cliffs it sits on. Today, the local stone is raw and worn, evocative of monolithic ancient ruins.
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From the outside it is impossible to image what is waiting inside. A discrete wall of dusty pink stone sourced from a quarry in the nearby town of Santanyi hides Can Lis from the outside world. Using these local materials, Utzon created a seamless connection between the architecture and the cliffs it sits on.
Today, the local stone is raw and worn, evocative of monolithic ancient ruins. Tiled stone tables and seats are constructed as permanent features, while protected nooks are carved into walls for beds. Additional furniture is kept to a minimum, and is positioned in each room to take full advantage of the view. Despite the visual sparseness, the home evokes feelings of cosiness, wellness and contentment. Utzon worked with metaphors that he translated into a sensation of space in architecture, such as seeing how clouds form the light or how it felt to sit in a cave and look out at the sea.
This is apparent at Can Lis, where the design was created and continuously modified to adapt to the specifics of the plot. Although completed in , when it feels being in an ancient ruin and a modern house at the same time. The walls are thick like a fortress and the materials are worn and earthy yet there are still structured, contemporary elements. The windows are deeply recessed; for such an exposed cliff-side perch, Utzon went to lengths to ensure inhabitants feel sheltered and protected within the home.
Rooms are arranged in a series of pavilions connected by transitional courtyards and stepping-stones, strung in a linear formation to take full advantage of uninterrupted ocean vistas. Buildings house distinct functions, with cooking, living, and sleeping areas separated to designate private and public spaces. A reference to the former street address, Avinguda Media Luna, a crescent moon motif is portrayed throughout profiles, patterns and room shapes in Can Lis.
A moon-shaped window is the first thing visitors see upon entry to the home, positioned directly opposite the front door. The living room is the grandest space in the house, with seven-metre high ceilings and five large windows giving a panoramic view of the sea. A beam of light shines through a small opening in the western wall.
Utzon said that happiness has to be counted in seconds and an example of this is the ray of light that slowly crosses the wall. It describes our relationship to time, to nature, to seasons, and what it means to be a human being in the world. The island itself has changed dramatically since , but Can Lis embodies a stoic sense of permanence, appearing in total harmony with its environment; as if it was always there, and always will be.
Celebrated as a shrine to architecture, the summer home is open to public applications to visit and even stay , having undergone upkeep renovations in
Jørn Utzon's Can Lis house, looking the Mediterranean, restoration by Lise Juel
History[ edit ] Utzon visited Majorca in when returning from Australia after disagreements with the authorities about how to complete his iconic Sydney Opera House. He was enchanted by the island and decided to build a summer residence there. The basic concept of the villa is similar to the design for the house Utzon had intended to build in Sydney: a number of pavilions arranged to serve the different functions of the building. The concrete roof is capped with of yellow tiles while the gables are crafted in the Chinese style, like those of the Fredensborg Houses. The four separate blocks are linked together with walls and courtyards. From west to east, the first block houses the kitchen, dining room and study, the second the living room, the third the bedrooms and the fourth contains a guest suite.
His submission unexpectedly was awarded, between entries from 32 countries, many of them from famous architects of the time. One of the judges, Eero Saarinen, described it as "genius" and declared he could not endorse any other choice. I Utzon soon found himself in conflict with the new Minister. In , after a final request from Utzon , closed his Sydney office and vowed never to return to Australia.
look inside jørn utzon's can lis family house from the 70s in mallorca