Since 1995, architects John and Sharon DaSilva have lived part time in the tiny Chilmark cottage they designed, and that neighbors affectionately call The Birdhouse. While various artists and authors have stayed in the woodland cottage on Fulling Mill Brook over the years, this month poet GennaRose Nethercott is in residence to write a suite of poems about the unique house and its context. Nethercott and the DaSilvas have collaborated before. She wrote nine original interpretive poems for the book Living Where Land Meets Sea: The Houses of Polhemus Savery DaSilva, the third book published on the work of Cape Cod based-firm PSD that does work throughout coastal New England, including on Martha’s Vineyard, and where John R. DaSilva serves as a Principal. The 376-page book was released in August 2016 by Images Publishing. “The book is a celebration of our work, and how the coastline has inspired that work,” said John DaSilva. “It is also our first collaboration with Poet GennaRose Nethercott, whose poetry specifically complements our work and the stories behind it.”
Since publication of the book, Nethercott has continued to write poems about the firm and its work, most recently appearing in Falmouth and Provincetown Arts magazines. Collaboration between poetry and architecture is rare, but John DaSilva (Design Principal of the firm and author of the book’s prose text) and GennaRose Nethercott believe the interpretation possible with the poetic form reflects the heart and soul of the architecture in ways that prose and photography do not.
Nethercott, a full-time poet and winner of numerous awards, including the 2017 National Poetry Series resulting in a forthcoming Ecco/Harper Collins book, says, “PSD’s work has a certain poetry about it, so working with them on this book was a natural collaboration for me, and an exciting one.” DaSilva agrees that having Nethercott’s poetry in the book is a perfect complement to the poetic architecture his firm creates. With stunning photographs and informative text, the book illustrates the care and attention PSD takes to create homes and resorts that seamlessly blend the past with the way we live now. Joining PSD’s previous books, Shingled Houses in the Summer Sun (2008) and Architecture of the Cape Cod Summer (2011), Living Where Land Meets Sea is more than just a coffee table book, it’s a discussion of the way one special and highly successful group of creators works with the ocean to produce artistically charged, poetic homes.