Shortly after it was completed in 2004, The New York Times described Belmont's so-called Copper House at Clifton Street and Fletcher Road thus: "[T]he $800,000 project ... has an altogether sculptural, almost balletic, force—at every turn, interplay between extremes of hard, soft, heavy and light."
Such severely pronounced designs were no accident. Architect Charles Rose was working to bridge two extremes: the original three-story Colonial already at the site with a more modernist two-story addition. How to do that? "He put the old house in a box," as The Times explained. First Rose wrapped the Colonial in a cedar screen and then joined it to the copper and glass modernism that dominates the airy house's appearance by way of a demolished garage and a new deck.
The 7,000-square-foot Copper House will serve as the home of Robert Downey Jr.'s character in the movie The Judge, set to be released Oct. 10, and also starring Robert Duvall and Billy Bob Thornton. Director David Dobkin was apparently quite taken with Rose's design, which includes two steel-and-glass stairways, a three-story atrium with six skylights, and three decks, including one on the roof. "My work is very sculptural and cinematic and relies on movement through space and form," Rose said in a release. "David made use of this feature and one experiences this dynamic as Robert Downey Jr. moves through the house." Does one? You be, um, the judge.
· Website: Copper House [Charles Rose Architects]
· Glossy Skin, Vinyl-Clad Heart [New York Times]
· Our Starchitecture archive [Curbed Boston]
[Photos by John Linden]