TEAHOUSE

Scroll down

The Teahouse

During the summers of 2015 and 2016, friends, family, and Studio members came together build a teahouse on a remote Maine island where Brendan spends time each summer running Islesford Boatworks, a nonprofit youth education program he started with his siblings in 2006. The 10 foot square Teahouse was inspired by a letter Brendan's father wrote in 1983 to a local builder, inquiring about building a small teahouse on the shores of an old ice pond on the property. The letter told the story of how the building would be a thank you present to the couple who sold the land to the Ravenhills, and who had always imagined that the forested banks of the ice pond would be a lovely place to have a spot of tea. Nothing ever came of that original letter, and Brendan's father passed away some years later. But 30 years on, the idea of pond-side teahouse finally became a reality.  

 

Located in a maple grove, the design of the Teahouse draws inspiration from the vernacular architecture of sugar shacks used to boil down maple syrup, and the sky spaces of artist James Turrell. 

 

During the summer, the structure opens to face the pond. 

 

With a large open face and retractable roof, the structure opens wide to the peaceful island atmosphere, while providing a basic comfortable shelter for sleeping and star gazing.

 

A mosquito screen is stretched along the front face of the Teahouse to keep the pests out but let the sights, sounds and smells of the forest in.

 

During the winter, the roof is closed and a flat-packed plywood skin - stored under the foundation platform during the summer - is brought out and wrapped around the Teahouse to protect the interior from the harsh winter climate. 

 

A reclaimed barn window illuminates the Teahouse from the back. The beautiful pane was salvaged from a barn that used to be sited on the property and was incorporated into the design to honor the previous owners who sold the land to the Ravenhill family.

 

Located in a maple grove, the design of the Teahouse draws inspiration from the vernacular architecture of sugar shacks used to boil down maple syrup, and the sky spaces of artist James Turrell.