Text description provided by the architects. Located and hour and a half north of Perth in the Chittering valley. The landscape is a combination of cleared areas for farming and bushland. Gently rolling hills and the patch work of vegetation under the vast Western Australian sky provide a great context for the project.
The climate is one of extremes, hot and dry in summer and cold and damp in winter.
The house nestles into the steeply sloped hill, providing both a refuge and a frame to connect the occupants to the landscape. The materiality and detailing seek to create a stillness and a neutral backdrop, intensifying the interconnection. The design provides a series of interrelated experiences rather than an static aesthetic response.
Materials are chosen to be low maintenance and left unfinished; gradually weathering and forming a patina over time-becoming integrated with the landscape. The intent is a sense of dematerialisation both as an object in the landscape and from within.
Open living spaces connect to the natural landscape as well as courtyards and a decking area, framing and abstracting nature. Providing contrasts and a variety of connected outdoors areas to sit and or eat.
These contrasts; of open views, framed views, abstracted courts as well as thin light apertures enliven space and describe the diurnal flow in a series of shadows and hues over the seasons.
Sounds of nature and the waterfall are a design element given equal importance layering experience in the outdoor spaces.
The house provides a private retreat for the owners and also a meeting place for extended family. The north west east wing opens up revealing beds and bathrooms that provide habitation for extended family. When the owners, a retired couple are home alone this area is closed. Leaving a surprising intimacy where the couple’s paths of life unfold.
The courtyard garden in raised corten beds is productive; producing fruit, herbs and vegetables. An essential element especially when in an isolated location.
Rammed earth walls huge thermal mass ameliorate temperature fluctuations over the seasons. High performance glazing, ventilation and a geothermal convective system ensure that comfort is maintained and energy consumption is very low.
Museum grade LED lighting not only displays art at it’s best; the rendering of space and reflected light give the spaces an essential quality without hinderance even without natural light.