Nine years after acquiring a wild meadow in Somme in northern France, professional globetrotter Tibo and his wife Nathalie decided to make a change in their lifestyles. They wanted to be able to open their doors and welcome in nature and a sense of well-being. Influenced by numerous visits they had made to Japan, where they had particularly admired the way that the country’s inhabitants live their lives, Tibo wanted to create a Zen-like space with hints of a traditional ryokan.
A mixture of classical Japanese architecture and Western ideologies (the house was constructed according to the standards of passive architecture) the building is completely at one with its surroundings. The sustainable solution to many of today’s ecological challenges, it employs a living roof, photovoltaic solar panels, geothermal energy, green electricity, the recovery and purification of rainwater in ecological basins and “green” toilets. Even the garden is considered, arranged according to the principles of celebrated landscape gardener Gilles Clément, who teaches that organic spaces neglected by man bear more natural resources and present more biodiversity than agricultural areas.
Sliding French doors part to encourage an indoor-outdoor flow...
...at the same time framing the zen sand garden and lush landscape beyond.
Artworks and statement pieces such as an ornate candlestick stand out against whites, greys and light woods.
Suspended bamboo rods and movable partitions afford the Japanese-inflected open-plan space elevated levels of flexibility.
The shower, which features rustic stone flooring, opens out onto the garden.
The home nestles under a canopy of trees, evoking a cabin-like feeling.
Photography: Frédéric Ducout