By Alicia Stemper/Vitamin O
“This is just a structure to house art. It also just so happens to be an artistic structure.” Will Ford spent nine months designing a barn that will function as “one giant creative space.” He named it CLOUDSPILL; the barn sits in a natural bowl “where the clouds spill into the sky.” Ford is now more than halfway through the construction phase.
CLOUDSPILL’s features will include a giant eastern red cedar tree as a spiral staircase and a cupula with a platform where a person can “sit, meditate, or even do yoga. You’ll be able to stand up there and it’s completely wrapped in glass so you get the sunrise, sunset, southern view, and a northern view.”
Ford envisions CLOUDSPILL as a place of connection on land he feels has “an energy” about it. “It’s a place where people end up coming without me trying to get them to come here.” The barn is down Whitlow Johnson Lane off Bradshaw Quarry Road; Ford welcomes visitors and clearly enjoys talking about his desire to build structures in conscientious ways. He trusts there “are people who are out there who are willing to take the time and the money to have something really well thought out and planned.”
Having CLOUDSPILL will “…add to that, where we can actually be inside, be equipped with tools and dust collection and creative minds and actually have a really nice space to excel at creating things that we really want to do.”
Artistic touches are planned throughout the building. The siding will be reverse board and batten, a deliberate choice because “it’s not trying to be something that it’s not.” The barn will be painted a dark blue and is capped by a silver roof, color choices that emulate “a knight in shining armor.” Ford feels the building looks “like a giant protector bird-dragon thing.” And although he employs meticulous attention to detail, he allows elements of the structure to emerge organically. For example, on its front end he plans a barn pattern in the shape of a diamond. “I’m not sure what it’s going to be yet but it will find itself.” Ford also plans interior and exterior lighting features to add drama and beauty to the space.
With a background in carpentry and prior experience in fine woodworking, building, framing, and furniture making, Ford has the skill set to allow his dream to emerge. Additionally, CLOUDSPILL is “more earth conscious than most buildings.” It is passive solar and has an R60 roof (normal is R38). A wind turbine will supply power and a wood stove will provide heat. Although the barn “is in constant evolution,” Ford hopes to finish construction in October. He welcomes visitors and email inquiries to WFWill8@gmail.com.