Australian Altruism: Locally Crafted House by Wolveridge Architects

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What the designer calls “a series of interconnected pavilions,” this 1600 sq. ft. Dune House is an example of linear space and interaction from Australia’s Wolveridge Architects. At the center is the “core” of the house, the living room and kitchen. The feel is “modern plantation” in character; heavy timber frames the main living area at the street façade, its framework an effective support and backdrop for greenery that’s intended to help abate the western sun’s heat. At the same time that this house is bathed in sunlight — and light is an ever-present element in the neutral décor scheme — it’s also filled with ample opportunities for cross-ventilation, not to mention surrounding a very inviting pool! The pool is a bit of a surprise at first; it looks like a water feature that’s nothing more than visual interest.

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However, guests soon realize that this is no ordinary pond or pool. As Wolveridge explains, it “…serves to articulate this interface between the public and private realms within the dwelling.” In other words, water is not just recreational here, but it’s also functional, an architectural element that separates bedrooms from entertaining and social spaces. It’s also part of the scenery from the main living room, as is a smaller lawn area that connects both the living room and a small study to the outdoors. This lawn becomes a “barefoot” accent that reinforces the recreational aspect of this dune house. And, in a gesture that goes beyond luxury and even leisure, the construction of this home used local materials and craftsmen…a boon to an economy in a bit of a slump. Not bad for a few rectangles!

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