Perhaps architect Jim Harlan will spark a new trend with photos of his unfinished home.
Harlan recently invited friend and photographer Dan Chavkin to a three-bedroom, 2,720-square-foot home in the Araby Cove neighborhood of Palm Springs that he designed for a client. Just before the terrazzo floor tiles were laid to rest, Chavkin had free rein to explore the empty spaces, naked framework, and rubble on the work site.
“It is always the completion of a house, camera-ready, that we see in magazines,” Chavkin says. “Jim hired me to photograph the opposite: the house during the construction phase.”
Selected interiors reveal a shell unencumbered by final finishes, furniture, and art, yet shot as if the house were complete. “I gave this home the same care and consideration with which I’ve approached all of my architectural photographic work.”
The stark rooms, all bare walls and uncovered windows, appear exposed and vulnerable, even caught off guard. “I saw a real beauty of the spaces in the raw state,” Harlan says of his decision to call Chavkin, who has photographed the architect’s other work. “I also realized that the house will never look like this again.”
Harlan designed the home to suit his client’s preference for trapezoidal shapes and sloped ceilings. “Dan’s photos convey, in the simplest of ways, how forms define space.”