Birdhouse Bonanza 


Nashville, Tennessee


Completed Summer 2006


50 SF


Cheekwood Botanical Gardens

Shop Team:

James Kennon

Project Collaborators:

Flow Construction Company


This small pavilion was design for an architectural competition sponsored by Cheekwood Botanical Gardens for their Summer Exhibition.  The architects collaborated with a local contractor / builder to build the folly on the Cheekwood grounds.  The competition description indicated: “Like the ubiquitous barns and birdhouses advertising our famous TN attraction, this “birdhouse’ is encouraging visitors to SEE the natural world from a different perspective”.

The small pavilion was designed and constructed of simple dimensional lumber framing and rough sawn lumber slats to recall the simple framing of Tennessee barns. Walls were constructed of exterior grade sheets of fiber board, typically used for signs along the interstate highway. The benches were framed of branches and limbs while the floor was covered in a bed of pine straw.  The proverbial ‘tree house’ or ‘play house’ idea evolves into an experience that challenges the imagination, amuses the spirit, and serves as minimal enclosure for the young spirit. After the exhibition closed, an observer purchased the bird house to place on her property.