The Three Principles of Indigetecture

  • The art and practice of building with materials indigenous to the landscape where the structure will be built
  • To design structures which are singularly purposeful, and make the highest and best use of indigenous materials.
  • To take best advantage of all attributes of, and to complement, the building site, and to minimize disturbance of the site and surroundings.

StoneHenge, the teepee, frontier forts, wattle and daub huts, Dogon villages, Anasazi cliff dwellings, log structures, Japanese timber frame temples, stone cathedrals, pyramids, Egyptian and Mayan, palm palapa’s, yurts, igloos, Bedouin tents, prairie sod houses, cordwood houses, straw bale houses, adobe, and the seasonal and fleeting sukkhala are all examples. These are such wise and intelligent reincarnations of materials, used and applied efficiently, and designed purposefully. The simplicity, beauty and grace that results is art in every sense, and yet most were produced by cultures deemed primitive today.

Some of the above examples are temporary, while others have survived centuries.Their common characteristic is that they are in, and of, the landscape they occupy. They nestle, they hug, they blend, and in some mysterious way, they nurture the inhabitants and illuminate the culture which constructs them, and are a comfort, and grace, to the landscape.

How does a modern day practitioner of indigetecture follow these principles? By the emphatic use of timber and wood in all its forms, grains, colors and incarnations, stone in its infinite variations, and joinery and surfacing that is derived from tradition. Using the predominant native materials of the mountains, to create beautiful, practical, modern, yet enduring, examples of building craft, rivaling those of yesteryear, and far exceeding them in comfort and efficiency.

And, it is our hope, that each of our dwellings is a complement to the landscape, and a source of pleasure and joy, to the owners, and all who pass through their doors, for all the years to come.


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