Because it has become so easy to write anything and have it seen by countless individuals on one of the microblogging sites, diagnoses of graphomania—the pathological impulse to write—have bubbled up from critics and social commentary. But during the pandemic, we have noticed another, more benign impulse: the eye-watering compulsion to use charts and graphs to understand reality.

On the way to Dromoland Castle in County Clare on the west coast of the Emerald Isle, the rolling hills and ruins of watchtowers signal movement through time. There is a stillness and simplicity, but also a cleanness and beauty that is enough in itself.

Anyone who has visited the communities that line the eastern slopes of the Rockies knows there is an honesty and straightforwardness in the architectural vernaculars. CLB Architects have created a multistructure residence called Five Shadows that integrates the peaks of the mountains while maintaining a reference to a Rocky Mountain rural architectural tradition.

Known for furniture and interior architecture, Paolo Ferrari has quickly become one of the preeminent young designers in Canada, attracting clients from all over the world with an aesthetic that, like the shape of the bone, transcends time and space, adjusting to a variety of functions and locations.

Italian photographer Nicola Bertellotti documents the contemporary remains of great European villas. Steeped in Romantic conceptions of the transient nature of beauty, Bertellotti’s project captures the nostalgia, sublimity, and precarious auras that emanate from crumbling structures.

Most recently, a plant-based restaurant, Nightshade, has opened an elegant dining room and released an eclectic and inventive menu likely to cause excitement among those looking for high-class dining as well as the local vegan population.

This home in West Vancouver completed in 2020 shows a classic modern geometric form with boxy shapes and concrete casting. But the materials lend a more complex appeal, namely the ribbed-cedar ceiling that stretches like a tarp over the whole structure.

Atelier C began as a country retreat for a couple but eventually turned into a full-time abode. The exteriors project a sense of thoughtful encapsulation and are also sculptural in the way the black angles rise from the crisp woodland scenery.

The design was carried out under the guidance of the City of Montreal heritage council so the spirit of the original midcentury modern home would not be lost.

The illustrious firm of Omar Gandhi (OGA) has made waves again in the Canadian architecture scene with this home, built to be Gandhi’s own residence in the north of Halifax.

Seven bedrooms and eight bathrooms explain the need for the double kitchens (the second being a spice/wok kitchen), and the primary dining space features a built-in banquet dining table.

Built to reflect the owners’ passion for sailing and the outdoors, the home’s wood exterior and the white protective roof that cantilevers out over the patio give a lightness

Casa Dois is a converted fish warehouse that sleeps four. The architects took the small two-storey structure and converted it into a minimalists’ paradise with plenty of outdoor terrace space, a feature typical of the traditional Algarve home, so guests can enjoy the warm climate.

A chef renowned in Bilbao commissioned a project from BABELstudio that will serve as a retreat as well as a restaurant and agrotourism destination in a restored farmhouse in Basque country.

Completed last year, this elegant home sits in an almost celestial simplicity against the wooded countryside of Quebec’s Eastern Townships, its white façade blending into the bright horizon.

The angular envelope suggests simplicity, but on closer inspection the structure shows a complex play of shapes and forms that create dramatic beams of light into the interior

This renovation of a 1930s Tudor-style home in Vancouver’s First Shaughnessy Heritage Conservation Area shows how modern amenities can be seamlessly implemented to bring classic designs into the 21st century.

“The simplicity of the architectural composition recalls the small farmhouses and barns of the Lombard countryside, making the house a primitive building devoid of any non-essential element.”

Denis Gutiérrez-Ogrinc stayed with the heat, tracking the sartorial and ephemeral styles on the street outside of the Michael Kors and Peter Do shows, among others

“Château’s primary inspiration was a nostalgic reflection on my youth in Provence transposed in the hills of Topanga near L.A. where I live. It has a very similar feel, the same pine and wild oak forested hills close to the sea.”

Responding to both land and family, the house seems to float on the soft green hills, lounging in articulated space next to the tree-lined watercourse, which hosts blue jays, herons, and pileated woodpeckers.

The 9,500-square-foot structure features the juxtaposition of concrete and wood, improbable forms, and generous glazing, resulting in a sculptural residence that still complements the dense foliage of its surroundings.

“It’s a very discreet intervention, but filled with complex technical design features and transformations that are only revealed inside the envelope.”

Being a restaurant in a hotel is notoriously difficult, having to manage the expectations of local and travelling guests, especially during COVID. Miantiao has an additional challenge: the cuisine fuses Italian and Chinese culinary philosophies.

With generous use of reclaimed wood, this Santa Cruz home is a relaxed modern build that channels the beachy vibes of the area and owners.

Since other forms of travel have been all but eliminated for the time being, Canadian scenic drives might be the salve that the wanderlust-stricken soul is yearning for.

When I arrive, the hot winds of summer are blowing down the mountains, melting the ice caps and filling the Athabasca River as it runs through the small mountain town of Jasper, filling the lakes and marshes with glacial water that reflects the massive peaks in its deep blue water.

There is a humbleness about this approach that seems to respect the topography, the grandness of the mountains, that seems to have inspired the home itself with the Café Canal stone walls and the multiplane roof.

Glazed tiles, used in 1884 at the nearby El Capricho Palace then being built by Gaudí, were placed in the original build and have since been restored by García-Germán, referencing the strong tradition of Spanish art nouveau in the area.

There was a knock at the door and Marthe went to open it and found a woman around her age, early thirties give or take, dirty blonde hair, soft denim maternity overalls that were sagging a little in the front, she was carrying a tiny baby.

Atelier by Lambert & Fils utilizes a delicate suspension with forms that sit variously between industrial and organic.

Constructed on what once was a decaying “worker’s cottage”—one of the small, narrow structures made usually of wood that housed many in the rapidly expanding Great Lakes cities during the Industrial Revolution—this home was built as a “ethereal sanctuary” for a retired elementary school teacher.

The two wings come together in a glass connection. Noble materials are used throughout to provide a natural colour palette accentuated by the vistas of water and greenery through the many windows.

The Vancouver-based multidisciplinary creative heads a practice that cultivates a fluid position between the fields of design, invention, sculpture, and architecture.

The pièce de résistance of the design: a glass-walled atrium in the centre of the space serves as a terrarium with red cedar stretching from the first floor to the second.

A postindustrial circular structure based on rational, geometric forms that utilizes a neglected piece of land in the city.

Inspired by the great halls of medieval times, the new two-storey atrium is meant to bring the lines of sight within the house up toward the sky and the treetops.

In the last few years, the environmental consequences of cement and plastic have become dire. With this in mind, the government of British Columbia has undertaken a new initiative to fund and explore the building of massive wooden structures.