This house, built in a contemporary/modern style, probably in the 1980s, not only has a diagonal orientation, but it has a structural design that harkens back to Gothic cathedrals and their flying buttress supports, in this case, squeezed through a Modernist filter. The buttresses come out at the sides of the building supporting an almost free floating angled balcony that acts as a covered entry porch. An otherwise spare structure without decoration; it is minimalist, a rotated block with chopped corners. The result is a breaking up of the squareness, making it sculptural, faceted, almost cubist in the bisecting of shapes; as in origami, which takes a flat piece of paper, folds it and makes it planarly three-dimensional.
The buttresses give relief to the squarish form of the house, acting both as design and function – the function of dividing the front-most public areas from the more private rear ones. And because these large perpendicular rectangles could be heavy and dominating, their mass is offset by cutout holes, reflecting the windows, that lighten and enliven them as some sort of earflaps. The visual effect is one in which the house appears to be cupping its hands to listen, or perhaps, to whisper something from its skewed position. Also, these unusual extensions give the house an animated quality of dimensional wings or gills – like the frilled lizard with its ruffled collar expanded to scare off enemies. Nearly subversive in its context of ranchers and colonials, this is modern architecture that not only steps, but juts, outside the box.