Gluckman Smith were approached by the emerging furniture and product design practice James Smith Designs to transform the former farmstead Argal Home Farm in Cornwall into a vibrant and inspirational place to live and work.
Proposals were threefold: the creation of a new and highly specified timber workshop facility, the conversion of a traditional barn into studios for local creative enterprises and artist residencies, and the replacement of the farmhouse to provide a contemporary family home. The concept forms part of a wider cultural endeavour underway in Cornwall that includes Kestle Barton and The Cornubian Arts & Science Trust in Helston.
The timber workshop lies at the heart of this new enterprise at Argal. Placed perpendicular to the creative studios the workshop is bold in formal expression yet reminiscent of the stable building that it replaces. In keeping with the working media of the client, timber in various forms was employed as a root material throughout. The frame is a glulam structure which provides elegantly the clear spans required for the workshop floor. Externally, cladding is in larch and the internal walls linings are finished in ply. Large north facing skylights have been incorporated into the roofscape, providing a consistent daylight required of detail woodwork. A high thermal performance was achieved through a fabric-first approach to design.