Copyright 2008-2023: Justin Wood
Donations always welcome. I run this site with my own funds and my own time, both of which are in rare supply. If you find this site useful or entertaining, please consider a small donation to help keep it up and running. Thank you - Justin Wood
Norskog House : 1963 / 1980
3811 Claire Drive, Carmichael, CA
4 beds / 2 baths / x sq. ft / 35,284 sq ft. lot
Agnes and John Norskog had the house designed by Sparks after wanting a house out of the ordinary and not being able to find it. The Strengs by American River drive were sold out, Eichler was done building, then Agnes found a newspaper clipping about Sparks teaching a night class about the benefits of modern architecture at a local college and decided to attend. After hearing him speak, the felt a camaraderie with the man and his desire to do things different. They commissioned Sparks to design something "with a strange, non-ordinary roof". After waiting three years, Sparks got back to the Norskogs with the hexagonal design, and they were blown away.
The home is almost completely executed in concrete and steel. Instead of traditional 5-sack construction, they chose 6, and steel contractors complained heartily when their tools broke in the extra dense concrete. John, a chemical engineer, insisted on a house that wouldn't burn. The only wood to be found is in the kitchen and bathroom cabinets.
They were unable to get a permits for the structure until they brought in a commercial building official. This seems to be why there is no data on the building from the assessor.
Clerestory windows fashioned of dual "pane" Filon, stained glass in the intersections. Agnes worked on tying the roof mesh and re-bar for 3 years. Weddings, funerals, the "1,000" dollar party. Misty the dog.
Affectionately called by neighbors: the circus tent, ufo and hanky.
Original landscape plan by Mark Askew & Associates (1973); not fully implemented
Interior architecture final plans drawn up by John Rotter (1978) after Sparks' initial design.