Though lean and tall in elevation, the Lightbox is dwarfed by much leaner, taller neighbors. Tucked into a dense forest of old-growth fir trees on a peninsula overlooking the Puget Sound, the house was designed by architecture firm Bohlin Cywinski Jackson as the studio and residence of a photographer and his family. In keeping with the simple pleasures of its arboreal setting, the design involves a wooden framework and ample glass that let natural light filter through the trees and into the house.
A Risom Lounge Chair in photographer Nic Lehoux's residence near Point Roberts, Washington. Photography by Nic Lehoux.
“Lightbox is an uncomplicated yet powerful gesture that enables one to view the subtlety and beauty of the site, while providing comfort and pleasure in the constantly changing light of the forest,” said Robert Miller, a principal at Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. “Having experienced the world from under a black focusing cloth and large format camera lens, the photographer has a special fondness for simplicity and an appreciation of unique, genuine and well-crafted details.”
Its exterior cladding darkened by Finnish pine tar coating, Lightbox maintains a subtle presence within the site—until night falls, and the house glows. The warm interiors of the residence invite its inhabitants to unwind on Risom Lounge Chairs that face the forest.
“Having experienced the world from under a black focusing cloth and large format camera lens, the photographer has a special fondness for simplicity and an appreciation of unique, genuine and well-crafted details.”
A Risom Lounge Chair matches the materiality of Lightbox, designed by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson. Photography by Nic Lehoux.
Cohering seamlessly with the materiality of the architecture, Danish designer Jens Risom’s 1942 collection for Knoll shares certain properties with the Lightbox: of durability, simplicity, and ingenuity. Developed for a wartime market out of rejected parachute straps, the lounge chair from the original 650 Line is a testament to the longevity of good design. For the inhabitants of the Lightbox, the chairs have become further ingrained with personal significance. “They are not just furniture, but I sense they are akin to dear friends,” the architect said.
Design: Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
Photography: Nic Lehoux