Ciclostile Architettura adds burnt wood and stone extension to a Bologna farmhouse


Bologna-based practice Ciclostile Architettura designed the project, which is located the countryside outside the town of Marzabotto, as a home and a workspace for the artistic duo Panem et Circenses.

The project required the partial demolition and extension of an existing farmhouse, and the renovation of an adjoining barn.


“The beauty and grandeur of the landscape in which the project is inserted required a delicate and careful approach, the new building had to present itself as a timeless object, one of the elements of the natural landscape,” say the architects.

“The new construction is a volume in stone and wood that has its roots in the mountain with which it forms a whole; a solitary object that expresses an intense relationship with the primordial energy and the geology of the mountainous landscape.”


Stone recovered from the demolition of part of the farmhouse has been reused to construct the ground floor of the extension within the footprint of the old building. The stone portion of the building visually connects the new home with the restored barn next door, and is partially sunken to reduce its impact. The larger upper floor is clad in vertical planks of charred timber, a material used widely in the Apennines and selected by the architects as “a technique inextricably linked to the territory but projected everywhere, an inclusive and welcoming common language.”

Inside the spaces feature a mixture of material finishes, ranging from concrete and fir wood panelling in the living spaces, to mosaic in the bathrooms.


South-facing rooms – the living room and kitchen at ground level, and bedrooms above – feature large windows taking advantage of views of the valley, while rooms on the northern side of the property have smaller windows.

A thick layer of wood fibre insulation reduces the burden on the heating and cooling system powered by photovoltaic panels, and rainwater collected in tanks is reused to water the landscaping.


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