Editor’s Journal – August 2018
By Karol DeWulf Nickell, Editor in Chief
The future of the Southwest home
We are wired to wonder about the future. While you and I know this from experience, neuroscientists at Washington University in St. Louis recently identified regions of the brain that are involved in envisioning future events. They found that the same parts of human minds that recall the past are used to imagine happenings years ahead. Scientists at Birmingham and Sussex universities in England similarly concluded, stating, “The brain relies on the past history to predict what will happen next.” In laymen’s terms, it really is, “back to the future.”
Our story on adobe is particularly well-aligned with these scientific findings. This ancient building material—a natural in the Southwest—is indeed relevant today as interest in and need for environmentally sustainable homes continue to grow. While adobe construction is more expensive than typical wood-frame choices, its long-term benefits are undeniable.
Another future fact: As we age, our brains lose some physical abilities to mentally simulate it. We are less able to visualize what’s down the road. Fortunately, there are plenty of forward-thinking people creating inspiring homes and gardens that are highly visible. We can see, feel and experience these spaces—such as the surprising remake of and addition to a modest Tempe ranch home by its owners/architectural team that appears in this issue.
Of all my thoughts about what lies ahead, this is my favorite: The future is already here. Thanks to iconic voices and talents, such as those possessed by architect Wendell Burnette, the Southwest has contemporary design that makes life easier, richer and balanced. His clients’ home is included here. He’s in good company with a chorus of newer voices and views that we’ve captured for your stimulation, enjoyment and contemplation.
And, finally, one more insight. As mentioned above, we are wired to wonder about the future. Wonder—but try not to worry.
We enjoy showing off our new offices, which are located at The Quad on East Thomas Road in Scottsdale. Sales team member Julie Spence and I hosted Feather’s Custom Furnishings owners/designers Claudia and Dan Levinson, who always have fun stories to share.
So thankful for this comment about the new Phoenix Home & Garden website:
“Hooray! The website is fantastic. I’ve been a subscriber for almost 10 years and can’t wait for each issue to arrive. So many of my home and gardening ideas have been inspired by the beautiful photography that has now come alive on the new website.”