McDonough House is built to last 80 years

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McDonough House at Loghaven Artist Residency in Knoxville, Tennessee is a cabin built of RHEINZINK-prePATINA gray zinc material. It’s meant to last more than 80 years on the 90 acres of woodlands overlooking the Tennessee River. RHEINZINK-prePATINA products are processed to achieve a natural, pre-weathered patina during production and will continue to patina over time as it is exposed to the elements of Tennessee’s woodlands.

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A wooden cabin house sitting in a forest

The McDonough House is an unobtrusive modern cabin with skylights on the paneled wood raised ceilings inside. The small building is nestled within a stand of oak and hemlock. The zinc roof was complemented by Sanders Pace Architecture’s design for the building of bluestone base, bronze railings, a wood rain screen siding system and mahogany window frames. From a distance, the cabin looks like any other in an artists’ colony. Up close, the attention to detail becomes apparent.

Related: These sustainable cabins settle into gorgeous landscapes

A house lit up inside during the evening

So apparent it earned awards, including an American Institute of Architects 2021 Architecture Award. The McDonough House is named in honor of late Aslan Foundation Board Member James McDonough, the foundation that established the Loghaven Artist Residency. The goal of the organization is to support arts and culture, animal welfare, land conservation and livability in the Knoxville area.

A living room with a wood exposed ceiling, cozy fireplace at a stone wall and a gray couch in front of it

However, original founder Myssie Thompson built Loghaven as a cabin rental community in the 1930s to support her two sons. The Foundation’s goals were to preserve the cabin’s original character and inspirational intent to support artists, protect the local ecosystem and create an artist residency to promote new work.

A snow-covered cabin in the woods

“The McDonough House has a similar visual language to the nearby historic cabins, reinterpreted in a more modern way to create a restrained and harmonious contemporary addition to the campus,” said Brandon Pace, Sanders Pace Architecture’s founding partner, FAIA, LEED AP.

The back of the cabin and a part of the side of the cabin in two images

General contractor Johnson and Galyon Inc. worked with a team of specialists to build the new 4,528 square-foot structure. Above All Roofing Contractor installed the double-lock standing-seam roof.

A cabin in the woods and the second photo is the inside living room without any furniture

Inside, the fireplace is also made of bluestone. Beams, floors and the vaulted ceilings are made of white oak to create a comfortable and welcoming place for resident artists. The chimney is clad in the same zinc panels, as is the exterior trim, which has hidden LEDs installed above the exterior windows and sliding doors to highlight the beauty of the building.

A stone pathway leading up to a cabin in the woods used for artists residencies

This zinc material does not just last a long time, it is also 100% recyclable. This corrosion-resistant metal requires minimal maintenance to last up to 80 years and is the only material of its type currently approved for this use.

“The McDonough House is a stunning example of quality design, materials and craftsmanship that will serve thousands of artists by inspiring new work and collaboration,” said Andrea Bailey, executive director of The Aslan Foundation.

+ Sanders Pace Architecture

Images via Bruce Cole Photography



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