Dawn, and a blurry ribbon of light appears along the eastern horizon, linking the grey surface of the Gulf of Mexico and the still black outline of trees and small sporadic structures on terra firma, as if the expansive state of Yucatán is populated by closely spaced cut-outs of organic and inorganic form. Birds begin to register their presence through discrete, specific calls. Soon, the pale oceanic light is infiltrating the interior of this house. The first trapezoids of light have entered the orthogonal domestic interior and are slowly making their way – their daily ritualistic path – across its raw concrete walls.
We are inside the Ziggurhut, the first built project from architect David Eskenazi and his Los Angeles-based practice, d.esk. Or, more precisely, we are inside the larger of two pavilions gathered behind a high perimeter wall on a corner lot in the beachfront community of San Crisanto. From this bedroom level, identical windows give views to west, north to the ocean, and east to the rising sun. We can just about hear the surf splashing against the shore a short walk away. There is a feeling of protection within these walls, but not of stasis, as the light cast by cyclical nature edges across the interior. These three identical windows in the space, each a single vertical pane, have an exterior screen for protection against mosquitoes and other semi-tropical critters. There is also a single metal door, painted bright powder blue and with an asymmetrical grid of thin bracing bars.
It looks like an industrial door even though views through window openings suggest we are on an elevated level. And then there is a tight circular staircase with concrete shaft and threads, descending to a lower level with only the most minimal, black metal handrail. Our sense of ground is being deliberately challenged.
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