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Title: The role of architecture and craft for the Ontario weekend dwelling
Authors: Winkworth, Michelle
Keywords: architecture;craft;Ontario;weekend dwellings;camp;cottage;cabin
Issue Date: 10-Apr-2019
Abstract: The spatial divide between work, home, and leisure provoked the development of secondary properties dedicated to recreation in natural environments, known as weekend dwellings. Canadians have formed a unique relationship with the weekend dwelling. As a country, Canada is united in the cultural importance of weekend dwellings however, the terminology and context of weekend dwellings is argued across Canada. Out of the large collection of terms, the most popular choices for Canadian weekend dwellings are cabin, cottage, and camp. Ontarians are locked in a linguistic debate between the northern Ontario camp and the southern Ontario cottage. Southern Ontario’s cottage country began in Georgian Bay during the 1800s with American hunting and fishing lodges.1 Camp, as a permanent weekend dwelling has its linguistic roots in the collection of rustic buildings that comprise logging camps.2 While the terms camp and cottage are not synonyms, they both hold the connotation of a self-built single-family structure that is integrated with nature. Contemporary weekend dwellings are permanent structures. Both the camp and cottage have the ability to inspire a sensation of being “away”. The Ontario weekend dwelling’s sense of away is fourfold: the journey, the physical structure, the active dwelling, and the return. Historically the sense of away was achieved through a lengthy train ride and the transition to a steamer. In modern Ontario where morning commutes can be as long as the journey to the weekend dwelling it is important to distinguish travel from journey. Weekend dwellings can be comprised of multiple architectural interventions. These physical structures play a primary role in our understanding of being away. If the architecture closely resembles experiences in the primary dwelling there is no distinction between place, and there is only geographical separated from the everyday.3 Actively engaging in the environment, weekend dwellings offer the opportunity to practice agency over one’s actions. Active dwelling is the collection of practices exhibited at weekend dwellings that differ from those at primary dwellings. The collective memory of place is a culture that both creates and is created by the place. Returning to the weekend dwelling builds that collective memory and cements the sensation of being away. However, the single-family weekend dwelling model has become economically inaccessible to the vast majority of Canadians. Using the framework of the sensation of being away this thesis looks to develop a structure that can preserve the importance of craft from the self-built single-family weekend dwelling into a shared lodge typology. The design of a learning lodge prioritizes craft and respectful building solutions with the ability to impart knowledge of how to live gently on the land, through a set of building details.
Appears in Collections:Architecture - Master's Theses
Master's Theses

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