Despite the rise of the ‘Plastic Age’, timber remains a constant in our lives.
Maybe it’s the abundance of trees – particularly in our Region – that creates a strong emotional connection. For Bark Architects, it was a 100-year-old tree that would guide them when designing the Marcus Beach House.
Originally designed by Bark in 2002 the house recently found itself with new owners, who naturally came to the original architects to design alterations.
“It is our first project, which we had the interesting and fortunate opportunity to revisit with another client after a number of years,” says Steve Guthrie, Bark Principal. “The current owners have a very keen interest in art and design and are supportive custodians of the architecture.”
“A few key areas were elevated from a raw economical beach house with outdoor laundry and polished chipboard floors to include more comforts and a higher level of finish within the framework of the character of the house.”
The home was designed to take full advantage of the large Morten Bay Ash in at the centre of the building. Two wings of the building wrap around the old tree, with a connecting walkway. Views to the tree and landscape were core to the design, ensuring a tangible connection with the environment.
Because of this relationship with the Morten Bay Ash, the pavilion spaces read like tree houses, from both inside and out, with a lightness of structure that is important in this part of the world.
“It is one of those houses which has a strong natural spirit,” Guthrie says. “It simply feels good and I think the experience of this for the clients and visitors comes from its inextricable link to landscape."
Photography: ©Christopher Frederick Jones