Country Villa images/538.jpg

Country Villa

Anchored into the side of an exposed hill, this house commands its site. Drawing upon the rural villa, with the formal organisation of landscape and interior space, a hedge demarcates the house and garden as domestic territory within the larger pastoral property. Perimeters are formed and with these, degrees of interiority are defined.

Square in plan and figured as a sheer masonry form, the house is highly internalised with both interior and exterior spaces accommodated within the confines of the massive perimeter wall. On the upper level four distinctive and discreet zones occupy each corner of the square, each with their own palette and quality of light. The interstitial space between these corners is fluid and changeable. In an offset cross formation the space extends in four directions of the compass, each arm indexing the variation of views, light and winds whether east, west, north or south. Within this, the palette remains neutral and constant with its timber walls, floor and exposed beams. To the centre it converges to form a gallery of sorts, currently used for dining – a dual aspect incorporating protected outdoor rooms. A house of contrast, if the exterior appears robust and relatively mute, the interior is highly changeable and dynamic. In particular the upper level can radically transform from intimate to open, from winter garden to summer breezeway through a series of glazed bi-fold doors, perforated custom orb screens and sliding walls. A climatically responsive building it provides protection from the elements and a spectacle of light and shadow in its calm and luminous interior. It answers the client’s desire for a semi-formal and mannered residence with a robust and gracious architecture of light and material depth.

Country Villa

Landscape Architect: Cath Stutterheim

Completed 2007