Atlanta architects Cara Cummins and Jose Tavel live in a modern home they designed. The Atlanta husband-and-wife team also have a modern house they designed on the Atlanta Design Festival’s MA! (Modern Atlanta) Architecture Tour June 2-3.
With views of the city, this four-level home was designed by Atlanta-based TaC Studios for empty nesters in the Old Fourth Ward. An elevator services the garage level to the roof terrace, allowing the owners to age in place. The living room, kitchen, office, powder room and dining area are on the second level of this 3,000-square-foot home. The master bedroom suite, guest bedroom, bath and artist studio (or third bedroom) are on the third level. The roof level has terraces on the north and south sides. CONTRIBUTED BY MICHAEL TAVEL
Photo: For the AJC
Architects & background:
Cummins: I grew up on a horse farm in Virginia and received my architecture degree from Virginia Tech. I moved to Atlanta in 1997 and worked at the Johnson Studio and Stang & Newdow.
Tavel: Born in Cuba, I moved to Atlanta as a child. I earned my undergraduate degree in science and master’s in architecture from Georgia Tech. I was a partner at Stang & Newdow for 15 years before we started our architectural firm.
The firm: TaC Studios, started in Atlanta in 2001. The name is a combination of their last names: Tavel and Cummins.
Firm’s first design job: Our first home and studio in the Old Fourth Ward. It is next door to the house (Tall Haus) we designed on the current tour. We sold our first home in 2010 and built our current modern home and studio a block away.
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Where you have seen our work: In magazines and in commercials. Our firm has had a house, including our own, on the Atlanta modern home tour every year since 2007. We also have designed restaurants, including Miso Izakaya in the Old Fourth Ward.
Design pet peeves: Stone that is not local. Atlanta is built on granite.
Current design obsession: Landscape. Everyone needs to engage with the outside, and architecture can frame that view.
New (or re-emerging) designs we like: A connection between the design, the client and their interests, and the site.
… and designs we would like to see go: The mega-mansion in the Louis XV style.
Unusual request: A display for a client’s tea cup collection. The tea cups were collected by her parents, now deceased, on their travels.
Biggest design mistake we have made: Not knowing a client planned to put two large TVs in the master bedroom. That was 20 years ago. Now we always ask about a TV in the bedroom.
… and biggest mistake homeowners make: Having a TV in the bedroom.
Instagram: arch_philo; side.gallery.bcn; architecturelover; newsideinterior; pietoudolf; biscosmith; and envision_landscape_studio
Websites: domusweb.it; dwell.com; contemporist.com
Atlanta area home/design stores/artists: City Issue (vintage must); Context Gallery; Switch Modern; Chip & Company (for the exotic); Illuminsations (for lighting); HA Modern; and artist Scott Ingram.
Latest project(s): Chattahoochee Hills Charter School in Serenbe and 16 townhomes on Kirkwood and Moreland called Madison Village.
Where to find TaC Studios:
Designed for a growing family, this two-story house overlooks a long-established golf course. Designed by architect Robert Cain, the Hillside House is in Marietta on Country Club Drive. The house is part of the 2018 Atlanta Design Festival’s MA! Architecture Tour. CONTRIBUTED BY FREDRIK BRAUER
Photo: For the AJC
2018 Atlanta Design Festival’s MA! Architecture Tour
When: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. June 2-3
Tickets & info: AtlantaDesignFestival.net/festival/tours. Tickets are $59 and good for both days of the tour.
What: The two-day, self-driving tour features 10 modern homes, including two Modern Style showhouse homes sponsored by Atlanta magazine’s HOME. While most of the homes are in Atlanta neighborhoods, there is one home in Alpharetta and another in Marietta. Maps of home locations can be downloaded from the design site.