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  5. Austin Maynard Architects
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  7. Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects

Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects

  • 00:00 - 6 March, 2009
Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects
Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects

Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects +35

  • Architects

  • Location

    Melbourne VIC, Australia
  • Architects

    Andrew Maynard Architects
  • Ama Team

    Andrew Maynard, Mark Austin, Matthew McClurg
  • Budget

  • Area

    120.0 sqm
  • Project Year


From the architect. Emerging from behind its high boundary wall, the distorted roof form of Vader House interrupts the symmetrical roof line typical of Fitzroy, and breathes new life into this Victorian Terrace.

The extension is a framed steel skeleton which envelopes the unusually high masonry boundary wall built prior to height restrictions, reclaiming it into the interior. The roof then responds to site setbacks which result in a distorted and subverted answer to regulations. This produces high folded internal planes, allowing double height ceilings, a mezzanine level and spacious interior.

The Eastern and Western facades of the extensions are encased in a shield of louvres. These peel back to reveal a folded internal environment of soft colours framed by exposed steel beams. Playfully splashes of deep red enliven the interior which is occasionally punctured by windows allowing a cinematic light to dance over the internal workings of the Vader House.

The refined material and colorful palette of the extension, wrapped in a heavy roof form distinguishes itself from the dark masonry clad terrace from which it emerges. These two opposing forms are united by a transparent glass corridor along the Northern boundary wall, framing an outdoor courtyard.

Strategic planning located the courtyard at the heart of the site, allowing both the terrace and extension to have direct contact with this outside space. It creates a central demilitarized zone that allows activities from the surrounding living spaces to spill into. This courtyard ensures that the entirety of the site is utilised.

Definition between these internal and external environments is barely distinguishable. Transparent bifold doors allow for constant physical and visual interaction, between these environs. The extensions is at once inside and out.

The courtyard's location also provides abundant natural light and ventilation into both the terrace and extension, importantly decreasing reliance on mechanical heating and cooling systems. The open and seemingly simple nature of Vader House later reveals itself to be one of complexity and ambiguity.

Many elements of the design prove to serve multiple functions. The bold stair case becomes part of the kitchen joinery, the louvres act as light control as much as privacy screening, and the boundary external wall doubles as the internal kitchen wall.

The extension is created out of components that appear to have fallen at the eastern end of the site in a tetris like manner. Unexpectedly a random tetris piece has lodged itself deep within the walls of the original building. This floating block provides the master bedroom with a en-suite reflecting its downstairs companion, fusing the terrace to the extension and giving a glimpse of what one will experience as they move through the site.

The anatomy of Vader House also extends far below the site. The timber deck in the courtyard doubles as a retractable deck, when pulled aside reveals a hidden spa, right at the very heart of Vader.

Similarly the timber floor boards in the extension form a trapdoor that when opened exposes a cellar, extending far beneath Vader. When these doors are opened, they alter the nature of their spaces significantly, providing the extension with a dynamic and chameleon - like interior.

Cite: "Vader house / Austin Maynard Architects" 06 Mar 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


Francesco Priano · March 06, 2012

@GigiPriano I&#39ve got more or less the same budget. Would you project for me something like this, but in Sciarborasca?

Stefano Bai · March 06, 2012

Vader house / Andrew Maynard Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Aman Playboy · March 05, 2012

Vader house / Andrew Maynard Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Brad Hooks · April 19, 2011

probably my favorite residential project >

?ï? A?q. ??una ?ï? · March 14, 2011

Vader house / Andrew Maynard Architects

Ian Barton · April 04, 2010

Vader house / Andrew Maynard Architects

Ellou · February 23, 2010

This is one of my favourite designs in a long time.

alex · January 04, 2010

prety awsome.

J. F. · December 30, 2009

such a nice house

Hailei Wang · May 28, 2009

I love this style.

Mr. Cheap · April 12, 2009

This is about as interesting as cluttering together architectural elements becomes. A lot of effort must have gone into making sure there was a reason for everything. I'm sure this is actually a very pleasant place to stay, although there doesn't seem to be much of an idéa to it. That in itself is somehow liberating the project.

evap · April 11, 2009

I like the inside-out idea - wide open space and the roof cut is very special!

u · April 11, 2009

very nice !!!

Hung Nguyen · March 28, 2009


Andrew Fallshaw · March 16, 2009

I love that while riding near home, we bumped into an amazing house I'd only just been marveling at online:

Thiefsie · March 10, 2009

Putting a house on Arch Daily is a PR push? welllll sorrrrrrrry.

What about every other architect on here?

Maynard is maybe one of the more self promoting architect's out there (at least in Melbourne) but that doesn't make the work any weaker for it.

I sense jealousy of the firm's 'alternative' ideas and presentation which gain a fair bit of recognition. Fairly or unfairly it doesn't matter.

I wonder how close they were to missing the cutoff for section J requirements from BCA. We can't get away with glazing/skylights like that easily anymore!

Cam · March 09, 2009

Very cynical Peter.

peter · March 09, 2009

yet another PR push from the maynard camp//
too much self publicity & hype ... yawn.

peter .f · December 30, 2009 05:09 PM

so WHAT !! if architects don't create PR for themselves then who will!! look around most of the built environment globally is meaningless and driven from concepts based on speed and money (not design) hat 'if i had one' would go off to andrew and his crew! well done!

wuxscho · March 08, 2009

A nice achitecture piece for Sunday morning in Vader house by Andrew Maynard Architects: :)

Liam · March 08, 2009

One of the most beautiful homes i have ever seen.
Silent Detail

Sadia Hayat · March 07, 2009

Its basic and beautiful

manuel · March 07, 2009

i love it.!

aiko0755 · March 07, 2009

I love the little master so much ,intersting!

berek · March 07, 2009


april_d · March 07, 2009

for when i move to Melbourne

z · March 07, 2009

mmm thats so deliciously detailed,sexy bathrooms too

odris · March 07, 2009

i love the big window in front


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