Naturally simple, the TK Pad is settled organically into a reddish-brown butte 10 miles south of Jackson. From its unadorned and earthy materials—most notably the post-tensioned rammed earth walls, patented by the architect and used here for the first time—to its butte-side orientation, the residence is in harmony with its environment for a successful design that won the architects an Award of Excellence in the “Built” category from the Wyoming chapter of the American Institute of Architects.
Crafted with onsite subsoil, the richly-colored, stratified earthen walls not only invite the natural world into the dialogue of the built environment but manifest the architect’s intentional ‘dirty modernist’ aesthetic. In plan, the walls serve as proxy for the natural, creating dynamic tension between obliquely angled exterior rammed earth and square interior framing that encourages movement through the open floor plan from public to private. The upturned butterfly roof, at odds with the butte’s downward slope, similarly emphasizes the created-versus-natural dynamic. Ultimately, through earth-conscious material and design choices, the TK Pad couples environmental responsiveness with environmental responsibility.