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Light, Layers, and Their Influence on Mediterranean Architecture

With their understated beauty and holistic design, Mediterranean homes are a perennial source of inspiration.

Light, Layers, and Their Influence on Mediterranean Architecture

architecture & interior

Connecting the outside with the in, and combining traditional features with contemporary elements - Mediterranean homes unify their environments with local culture. 

Reimagined by Puglia native Walter Espedito Trento and his Ukrainian partner, Nadiya Yamnych, Trullo Nostrano exists in two parts: the trullo, a circular mortarless construction made up of local limestone bricks, and the lamia, a flat-roofed structure with barrel vault ceilings - both emblematic of the region in which it sits.

To restore the vacation home in the olive-tree filled Valle d’Itria, Espedito Trento and Yamnych married vernacular techniques with contemporary awareness to link past and present. “Using the same language in these interventions is important, and inserting contemporary elements is possible,” the duo says. “But it only works if a perfect balance is achieved.”

Espedito Trento and Yamnych apply lime wash to Trullo Nostrano yearly. These white surfaces reflect the sun’s radiation, cooling the buildings. (Photo: Courtesy of Nùevù Studio, The Mediterranean Home)

Keeping with tradition, Espedito Trento and Yamnych showed a profound respect for the environment, employing only natural, sustainable materials when renovating and furnishing the buildings, with handcrafted furniture and organic linen adorning the property inside and out.

In a similar vein, the couple utilized the ancient practice of cocciopesto, or opus signinum, in which tile and pottery are broken into tiny pieces and incorporated into lime and sand to create plaster, flooring, and other objects. The method plays on their desire to be both practical, by recycling and reusing material, and stylistic, achieving “perfectly imperfect finishes.” 

Outdoor spaces invite visitors to settle into the pace of life in Puglia, where long, hot summer days lend to a slower approach. (Photo: Courtesy of Nùevù Studio, The Mediterranean Home)

Throughout the region, nature serves as the protagonist in architecture, and the case is no different with Trullo Nostrano. Espedito Trento and Yamnych focussed as much on creating exteriors for meditating, socialising, and dining as they did on the warm, dreamy interiors. Outside, they accented the customary whitewashed walls with turquoise, a color inspired by the lamia’s old door that also mirrors the plunge pool’s waters. Like many architects and designers that preceded them, from or inspired by the Mediterranean landscape, Espedito Trento and Yamnych are quick to name their biggest influences for this stunning Italian property: light and layers. 

Through the application of natural colors, the countryside property strikes a harmonious chord with its surroundings. (Photo: Courtesy of Nùevù Studio, The Mediterranean Home)

Mediterranean homes have an ongoing influence on residential architecture and interior design: from classical rural styles, to more grounded spaces that interweave form and function. The Mediterranean Home looks at architecture, interior design, decoration and furniture, celebrating the unique Mediterranean aesthetic that continues to inspire a sense of home and comfort around the globe.