Project of the Week | Rafaela Netto / FGMF Architects

Project of the Week | Rafaela Netto / FGMF Architects

Project of the Week

Rafaela Netto is an architectural photographer working in São Paulo who is rated one of the top up and coming female visionaries in the industry. I wholeheartedly agree. She is a master of using framing to show off the environment of her projects, and each piece in her portfolio gives off an interesting sense of place.

One home, in particular, caught my attention: FGMF Arquitetos‘ Grid House (or as my Google translated browser tricked me to inquire about – House Grill. *facepalm*).

Rafaela’s set of images for this house led me to take a deeper look into FGMF’s architecture, and São Paulo’s architecture as a whole. I love the way buildings in Brazil interact with the beautiful landscape. In the Grid House project, Rafaela strategically frames the building with the Araucaria trees growing on the property. This is such a great way to imply the forest that surrounds the Grid House without blatantly photographing it.

FGMF is known for the louvers, beams, and sprawling horizontal elements that they incorporate into their buildings. Here we see Rafaela showing off the connecting pathways that connect the nucleus of Grid House to other areas of the property and structure. I appreciate the time of day she chose to photograph this project. The shadows of the palms and the repeating lines from the pergola like slats create depth and interest.

This shot is integral for showing off the expansive nature of the building. Grid House is a one-story home built up and off the ground to combat Brazil’s humid climate. The angle Rafaela chose for this image leads us through the different wings and compartments of the home, showing depth and the disparity between the home and the ground below. I especially love the mountains and clouds peeking out of the louvers and grids in the background.

This project is a great example of color theory at work. The warm orange tones in the wood contrast nicely with the blue sky and cold green tones in the foliage surrounding the building. It perfectly conveys the notion that the Grid House is a warm and inviting structure in the midst of a lush landscape.

The lighting in the dining room implies a shift in time of day. The shadows that the chairs cast on the counter island mixed with the warm tones picked up in the beams and chairs give me a nostalgic feeling of being called to eat dinner as a kid. The beams leading to a common vanishing point drive our eyes through the image, producing an anchored feeling that contrasts the squiggling motion from the patterns on the floor.

The shift in time of day lends itself nicely to the following set of images, which in my opinion, are the creme of the crop. Again, I think Rafaela was extremely wise in timing this shoot!

Look at the starburst light hit slicing through the tree and pouring specular warm light on the left side of the photo. It fits perfect with the patches of sunlight on the mountains beyond and I can immediately sense the time of day, the weather, and imagine the chirping of crickets in the grass. Rafaela’s photograph makes me feel like I am present, and home.

I appreciate the subtle vignetting leading our eyes down the hill and into the valley where the house lies. There is a lot of visual information to process in this photo, but the angle is necessary for showcasing the way the Grid House is built in to the landscape.

This last image is one of my favorites from the project. The warm sunlight cascading across the stairs shows off the texture in the masonry. I love the foliage in the foreground and the framing of the building in the trees. It lets us end where we began with this project, and now more than ever, I’m eager to see more architectural photos from São Paulo!

Many thanks to Rafaela Netto and FGMF Arquitetos for being part of this week’s POTW. We always love seeing examples of great architecture and photography from around the globe. If you have a project you’d like to be considered for Project of the Week, you can submit it here.

Howdy! I'm Lexi. I write and make photographs. I love being outside and listening to '00s indie rock.
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