Adele Weder might have had this renovation in mind, when she described D'Arcy's constructions as being Modernistic, graceful, and well-proportioned. The lightness of his touch and grace illuminates this dwelling.
The Cowboy cabin
Set squarely in the woods, the Cowboy cabin is a flat-pack cabin, one-story, well proportioned as all of D'Arcy creations are, and resonating with its landscape and surroundings by the use of scrubbed, unadorned wood.
D'Arcy shocks again by shifting the entrance door from its familiar place, and by transforming a tectonic structure into something that is 'light and minimal' and blends into its surroundings.
Totally scorning conspicuousness, the unadorned structure merges light and air (in its breadth of light material to portray a modernistic dwelling that focuses on simplicity and primal value and by doing so it becomes one with the wood around it, humbly fitting in and becoming part of its context.
Portraying a minimalist style, the cabin has no windows only two floor to ceiling gaps in its surface front for doors. The sides are constructed of darker wood, the front from lighter wood, and it stretches back into its surroundings, robust and confidant, homely and inviting blending its formation into its environment.
With its simplicity of structure and meticulous emphasis on detail, it is no surprise that the 'Cowboy' cabin won the prestigious Award of Merit in the 2009 Canadian Architect Annual Awards of Excellence.
It is authentic in its return to nature and in stripping away the veneer of contemporary pretentiousness to the essence of life: freshness, earthiness, genuineness, and an illumination that enables it to merge 'form and site, space and climate' together in one beautiful whole. The end result is a perfect consummation with nature where the whole, begun with the familiar is subtly transformed into something new.
D'Arcy's constructions, generally, have flat roofs, deep overhangs, and, oftentimes, large spaces for windows or doors. They are deceptively simple. The Jone's house, for instance, would easily run from $65,000 to $100,000 and that's just for the shell of the house (Levy, 2010). The simplicity of the construction belies its costliness.
His buildings are cutting-edge, certainly not tacky, and present a fresh minimalist look that whilst linking to the familiar transforms into something new. Each and every creation carefully takes the environment into consideration and like the artist that he is, D'Arcy seeks to penetrate into the essence of the environment and recreate that transparency, nature, and light by way of his material and form. In the Jones case, the house seemed to deny the reality of its location, but in the case of the cabin and the McLellan-Saddy renovation, D'Arcy's constructions fit in splendidly communing, as it were, through the slope of the structure, the generosity of the form, the color and high-quality of the material, and most of all, through the minimalistic design, with the breadth of space around it.
Emphasizing design over space, D'Arcy fights against the trend of proliferating monster homes and Mcmansions. 'Good things are small' says Weder, and D'Arcy targets wealthy clients who wish to live in smaller homes.
Rather than the 5,000 plus square feet for a 3-member family, (with the countless empty rooms to spare), D'Arcy has chosen to keep it compact and ecological with a profusion of openness so that the house actually ends up feeling more expansive than the standard contemporary dwelling.
Instead of behemoth and space-wasting matter, D'Arcy Jones focuses on maxing out the quality and innate form of homes so that, with his timeless forms and substantial material D'Arcy transcends time and returns people to nature.
Canadian Architect. "The Cowboy." Retrieved March 3, 2011 on from: