Article in "Interior + Design" magazine No. 11, 2005
Not many houses like this in Russia. Like aristocrats among the nouveau riche, they stand out by breed. Looking at them, many want to believe in unshakable foundations, eternal values and honest word. In the "white house" of the architect Ilya Utkin, it seems, a century later they will follow the posture. So it is well tailored.
Would be fair the expression “modern reading of the classics” to Utkin’s house. The trouble is that it is hopelessly discredited, because it applies to buildings with poorly painted, randomly thrown historical details. There are a lot of such houses, fussy for luxury, in the village. Utkin's house - is like an aristocrat among the nouveau riche among them. Simple and noble. Cause? Exceptional creative author's 'background' and, as a result, international recognition of his aesthetic viability. There are fewer such architects in Russia than fingers on one hand.
The house turned out to be “classic, but modern”, as the customer wanted. More precisely, the image as a whole is classic: the house faces three sides with magnificent porticoes. But looking closely, you realize that this is some kind of "tough" classic. Instead of columns - square pylons with rough couplings, in some places there are not even capitals. Not a single arch, nothing rounded, except a gazebo and a nymphaeum, but this is in the park. True, the closer to nature, the softer the shapes: for example, puffy balusters above the park portico of the house are strangers, the park is close. The layout shows the same combination of classics (almost symmetrical plan) and modernity (dining room and living room merged into one space). Manor houses of the past did not stand among the trees. Utkin managed to combine it with the forest, sensitively choosing the necessary proportions and natural materials. Limestone pylons, wood pediments, copper roofs will noblely age. And the walls will fade the plants.