Machado Silvetti is a leading architecture and urban design firm recognized for creating, revitalizing, and expanding distinctive buildings and spaces in the US and around the world. Its work is diverse in location, scale, and type, and merges contemporary agendas and aesthetics with complex cultural and historic contexts. Machado Silvetti’s research-based approach explores and celebrates each project’s unique character, expressed through designs that are original in their conceptual clarity and visual intensity.
One of their project is the Menokin, in which the studio led an interdisciplinary group of respected professionals to stabilize, preserve and interpret Menokin House (a National Historic Landmark) and its ancillary buildings and landscape.
In the 18th century the Menokin site became the plantation home of Francis Lightfoot Lee, a signer of the Declaration of Independence. The Georgian mansion, built for Lee and his wife in 1769, has been vacant and slowly deteriorating since 1960, and is currently unstable with over 80% of its original material in a state of collapse. The Menokin Foundation aspired to approach the conservation and interpretation of the house in a truly innovative and revolutionary way. Their philosophy was to stabilize and exhibit the historic fabric that remains, while giving the public a unique understanding of the irreplaceable portions of the artifact, and by representing them with a completely different material: glass.
The project concept saw the delicate marriage of the “old” and “new,” maintaining their distinct characters and establishing a necessary synergetic relationship between the formal, environmental and structural interdependence between the two. At present the project’s Concept Design phase is complete, which included a detailed concept summary, pricing set and concurrent comprehensive stabilization package.