Tatiana Estrina

House for J.S. Bach


A residence for the famous composer and organist explores the fugal music structure through an architectural lens as an organizational approach to the architecture through play with fragmentation. Fragmentation of realities and cadences emerge from subdivision of spaces, fenestration, and light as well as from the segmentation of planes and materials.

Bach is well known for his Fugue compositions, musical pieces created using overlapping voices. As the organ instrument provides the organist with multiple manuals, the fugal structure capitalizes on this multiplicity by overlaying repeating melodies in different keys, thereby generating counterpoint. This music structure is explored as an organizational approach for the architecture through play with fragmentation.
A fragmented journey through the house, follows the experience of the client as they occupy the spaces. Entering from the dock, they enter the public living spaces. The central stairway serves to connect the various levels, with visitors able to ascend above to the bedrooms or descend below to the organ and composing rooms. Throughout the project, fugal musical structure is employed through fragmentation which is emphasized via the placement and form of architectural planes, but also by the light access and the placement of the artificial illumination.






Ryerson Department of  Architectural Science Toronto, CA.