What was already the First Italian Methodist Episcopal Abbey on a quiet residential artery in Little Italy in southwest Chicago has been reinvented into a automated and a seven-bedroom, six-bathroom single-family abode for a active brace with three children, which showcases aboriginal stained-glass windows, a majestic five-story tower, a cantankerous aloft a gray slate roof, a cream-colored brick façade and two street-facing gables. The surrounding Victorian-, Colonial- and Italianate-era homes reflect their inhabitants’ tastes, an breadth that saw the accession of Italian immigrants at the alpha of the 20th century. Artisan Giovanni Boschetti, a Milanese immigrant, was commissioned to architectonics the architectonics for his congregation’s new abode of adoration in 1901, which was admired by the abbey association and bounded residents, but eventually shut in 1920. Left abandoned for decades, the University of Illinois at Chicago eventually purchased it to board assorted campus ministries from the 1970s to the aboriginal 2000s afore its latest incarnation.
Directing the renovations including the antecedent annihilation phase, 47-year-old Chicago-based architect, autogenous artisan and artisan Linc Thelen formed with bounded Chicago close Scrafano Architects for the architectural drawings. Having accelerating with a BFA from Northern Illinois University and advised art in Italy and France, Thelen has been painting for over two decades and transposes aesthetic attempt of composition, texture, anatomy and ablaze to three-dimensional spaces. In the autogenous architectonics business for the accomplished 17 years, he describes how his accomplished art accomplishments influences his architectonics assignment to accord him a different vision, “Both designing a home and painting, I alpha off with alive with the composition. My ambition is to actualize composed compositions with basal adventurous accents. I am on-site all throughout the alpha of architectonics to the final installation, which allows me to abound with the activity and collaborate with it during anniversary phase. This allows me to accomplish architectonics changes and additions as the activity unfolds.”
Adopting a “master builder” access to his work, demography on the roles of artist, artisan and accepted contractor, Thelen choreographs spaces that are around-the-clock yet inject a blow of the unexpected. The claiming actuality was to account the absolute architectonics of the abode while adapting it into a avant-garde residence, befitting aloof the appropriate antithesis – old and new had to alloy harmoniously. The abbey was added than a aeon old and annihilation was akin so the absolute abode bare to be reconstructed. To accord it a a look, aggregate had to be balanced appropriate bottomward to the aboriginal details. Finishes were called to actualize a contemporary and all-embracing atmosphere accumulation clear wallpapers and ablaze fixtures.
Thelen explains how he reworked the architectonics from that of a abbey to that of a house, “The all-inclusive beam acme and accessible amplitude are unique. The aboriginal acme of the beam was 18 feet, which adumbrate the now apparent beam trusses and metal turnbuckles. We aloft the beam acme to 25 anxiety and this is one of the acknowledgment appearance in the home. We disconnected the capital active space, abacus the apparent fireplace, den, crumb room, laundry room, second-floor boy’s bedchamber and bathroom. The second-floor alley was originally an autogenous hallway. We capital to add added amplitude to the second-floor bedrooms, so we cantilevered the hallway, giving a different architectural feature. We capital added ablaze to access the home, so we opened up the antechamber access and put an automated steel-and-glass door. This additionally shows off the decrepit bottle and makes the home feel larger. We kept some of the apparent brick, the decrepit bottle was repaired and we acclimated some of the absolute copse timbers.”
Check aback aing anniversary for Part 2 account the house’s bespoke décor and furniture.
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