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Design Hunters
Conversations

Iconic Australian Houses

“It’s certainly – in terms of iconic – a good example of his work and has all of his design elements as original,” says Karen McCartney of Bruce Rickard’s 1967 Marshall house, which she lives in with her husband and two children. Built-in storage, light fittings and characteristic modest proportions are just some of the features they enjoy. bruce rickard marshall house Karen will be opening her home up for a focus tour series organised by Sydney Living Museums as part of their 2014 Home & Architecture program. Others include the Jack House by Russell Jack and Rose Seidler house. The tours will offer an intimate insight into living in an ‘old’ home – the joys, responsibility and challenges. marshall house bruce rickard The tour series is complemented by a talk series that will explore issues to do with living in, designing, making and protecting iconic houses. And kicking off the program is an exhibition at the Museum of Sydney that brings Karen’s hugely popular Iconic Australian Houses book series to life. Untitled-7 Karen has selected and re-grouped the best examples from her books into themes (rather than chronologically) such as ‘architecture as sculpture’ and ‘architecture in the landscape’. This is a nicely cohesive way to visually experience the mastery of greats such as Glenn Murcutt, Richard Leplastrier and Bruce Rickard, which allows us to see threads of architectural approaches and influences running through the past 60 years. Untitled-4 Images are immersive and accompanying texts are clear, yet expressive. Thanks to Karen’s experience in editing and publishing, the exhibition is beautifully laid out. It’s a small, succinct and considered experience, offering engagement through video interviews with some of the architects, 3D models, illustrations, sketches and iPads.   Untitled-1 Photography: Michael Wee For the full list of events see our calendar or click here  Hear Karen talking about life in Bruce Rickard's Marshall House Iconic Australian Houses is presented in partnership with Architecture Foundation Australia. Iconic Australian Houses Museum of Sydney 12 April 2014 - 17 August 2014 slm-logo-blockabc
Architecture
NOT HOMES

Absolut Oz Explores Eco Graffiti

Absolut vodka has a rich heritage of collaborating with inspirational artists and is now evolving this spirit of creation for the next creative generation. absolut5 At the heart of Absolut Oz is an inspiring emblem designed by Luhrmann in partnership with his Creative Director and wife, Catherine Martin. Featuring Australian icons including sulphur-crested cockatoos and native flowers, alongside references to various ingredients which make up its spiced orange flavour including gum nuts, orange and cardamom, the design became the inspiration for two other artists - Adriana Picker and Tim De Haan (also known as Phibs) Street Artist - to create their own interpretation which will appear in locations around Chippendale, Sydney, as well as in the Melbourne CBD. absolut3 “The concept of eco-friendly art strongly appeals to me on a number of levels’’, said Luhrmann. "At its heart is the idea that something remarkable can be brought to life or transformed in a totally new way.” This idea of transformation is also very much a part of the Absolut mantra, Transform Today. absolut2 “Luhrmann is known for taking the classics and transforming them into modern masterpieces," says Anne Martin, Marketing Director of Pernod Ricard Australia, "so it’s a fitting evolution that these two emerging artists have used Absolut Oz as created by him and reinterpreted the work into their own unique piece.” absolut1 “The all-important subtitle of Absolut Oz - 'we are all equal under the sun' - also becomes much more relevant with this next creative phase being realised in the truly egalitarian medium that is street art," adds Martin. Tim De Haan’s work will be viewable from 20th March, 2014 and later at the Loch & Key Bar. absolut Picker’s work will be unveiled on 28th March, 2014 and will be viewable for up to four weeks thereafter at the old Abecrombie Pub. “I think the ephemeral nature of this work reminds us that art doesn’t have to be something hung in a museum forever, like so much in life it can be fleeting, it’s the impression or memory that counts," adds Luhrmann. Watch below for more of the behind scenes footage: Absolut OZ absolut.comabc
Happenings
What's On

Protecting Iconic Australian Homes

In this talk hear Philip Goad, professor of architecture at the University of Melbourne, Annalisa Capurro, design educator and owner of the Jack House ( winner of the Sulman Award in 1957), and Ian Innes, assistant director, heritage, at Sydney Living Museums, discuss the challenges we face when trying to conserve iconic homes for future generations to appreciate. Home & Architecture talk series Date Start: 2014-08-17 14:30:00 Date End: 2014-08-17 16:30:00 Location:Museum of Sydney, Cnr. of Phillip and Bridge Streets.   abc
Happenings
What's On

Making Iconic Houses

The word 'iconic' is thrown around easily nowadays, but what does it mean for a house to be described as such, and how is it manifest in the building itself? The event will explore 29 iconic architect-designed 20th century houses from the 1950s to the 1990s, and is presented in partnership with the Architecture Foundation of Australia. The talk will look at the different house styles that developed across Australia from the 1950s to the beginning of the 21st century – dictated by climate, materials and the sheer inventiveness of the architects. Home & Architecture Talk Series Date Start: 2014-5-25 14:30:00 Date End: 2014-5-25 16:30:00 Location: Museum of Sydney, Cnr. of Phillip and Bridge Streets. abc
Happenings
What's On

Rose Seidler House Focus Tour

On this tour, Sydney Living Museums portfolio curator Joanna Nicholas will discuss the privilege of caring for and interpreting Rose Seidler House, including working with a property and collection containing a diversity of items and finishes such as asphalt floor tiles, vitrolite shelving, faux-animal-fur bedcovers and steam-bent furniture! Home & Architecture Focus Tour Date Start: 2014-05-10 Date End: 2014-05-10 Times: 10:00:00 - 10:45:00 11:00:00 - 11:45:00 13:00:00 - 13:45:00 14:00:00 - 14:45:00 Location: Museum of Sydney, Cnr. of Phillip and Bridge Streets.   abc
People
Design Hunters
Conversations

Tasmanian Idyll

There comes a time in most urbanites’ lives when the costs of living in a city outweigh the benefits. There is a growing need to de-stress, especially if one works in publishing where the deadlines are relentless. I have always envied those Scandinavians with their disarmingly simple coastal retreats. What about Inspector Wallander who apparently only has to roll out the back door to be on his own private beach. idyll3 My wife and I looked first to southern Western Australia, but circumstances intervened. Then we looked at the east coast of Australia and quickly realised that anything affordable was a day trip from the coast. idyll5 We even looked at New Zealand, but that was culturally and geographically a step too far. Finally, we targetted the east coast of Tasmania. A chain of contacts led us to Dolphin Sands which is a long spit of land separating Great Oyster Bay from Moulting Lagoon and it was here that we began our Tasmanian idyll – on five acres with 200 metre beach frontage and ineffable views of the Bay and the Freycinet Peninsula. idyll4 Here, apart from the gentle lapping of waves, there is complete silence. The existing house gave us almost everything we needed, including a 4 metre pool/spa and an established protected garden. But, both of us being serious foodies, what we needed was a first-class kitchen to cook those organic ingredients. So, with help from my joiner, I designed a brand new kitchen – the one we have always dreamed about, one which really works. All the appliances are Miele, the expansive benchtops are Corian, the drawer runners are Hettich. idyll2 We wanted an Asia meets Tasmania feel to the place. So, the dining suite, the entertainment credenza and the beds are designed and manufactured by Launceston firm, Designs in Timber. Rather than paintings, we have used South-East Asian textiles and Japanese kimonos as decorative elements, reflecting a certain Asian feel to the house. idyll6 Our one concession to Europe are the Louis Poulsen pendant lights over the dining table. Needless to say, we can’t always afford to stay there. So, our holiday rentals help with the mortgage. But the name of house, Peace and Plenty (inherited from the previous owners) we tell our guests stands for lots of peace and plenty of fun. idyll1 For more photos and to see what some of our guests think go to the link below. airbnb.com.au/rooms Images: Paul Lovelaceabc
Architecture
Homes

Light-filled TT Apartment in Singapore

To live in one of Singapore’s public housing apartments requires a certain state of mind. Juggling space (or lack there of), privacy and regulation are only some of the factors you face when you own a Housing and Development Board (HDB) apartment. And with over 80% of Singapore’s population living in these HDB flats, you also face the rule of design commonality; apart from personal possessions, your apartment probably looks like every other. tt6 It creates an interesting set of challenges, and one recently experienced by Low Chee Khiang and Roystern Goh, of 0932 Design Consultants when they were asked to re-design a client’s 102-square-metre apartment. Juggling the necessity for three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen, a living area and a brief for a contemporary design aesthetic, Khiang and Goh required an approach that was, even at its very basic, highly conceptualised. “It was no doubt one of the most interesting interior projects we have worked on,” says Goh. “But from the beginning, we were always interested in exploring the idea of using the built form itself to maximise space in an interior project.” tt4 Located in the Northern region of Singapore, TT Apartment was a new build in a private condominium apartment block. 0932 Design were essentially brought in to make the space more liveable, more personalised; “The owner’s brief was to create a space with a light industrial aesthetic, but balanced within a warm and cozy setting,” says Goh. tt1 Deciding to keep both the flooring and bathrooms in their original state, and using the apartment’s concrete walls as dividers in the living room meant that extra space was created at the front of the apartment for the construction of a wooden pavilion. Housing all the main activities including dining, entertaining, reading and even yoga, the pavilion acts not only as a functional extension to the living areas, but also as an artistic insertion into the otherwise mundane HDB design. tt8 “Looking from the functional aspect,” continues Goh, “the pavilion can also maintain the apartment’s air-conditioned environment when it is fully closed. But it also has the option to be partially opened for ventilation.” When all panels are closed, the pavilion also serves to minimise noise from the street below. “And in the evening, when there is a need for entertaining or dining, the surfaces of the pavilion are detailed to accommodate a built-in dining table,” adds Goh. tt2 It is clear that 0932 have taken note of Singapore’s tropical climate; its very essence forms the basis of the pavilion’s wooden panelled details. But beyond this didactic purpose, Khiang and Goh’s pavilion is also a stunning work of design, art even; a careful, considered and precise form that captures us intellectually and emotionally. And in a city as heavily layered in urbanism as Singapore, it’s inspiring to see design professionals like 0932 seek better ways for living. tt9 Images: David Chan and Dennis Lim 0932 Design Consultants 0932.amabc
Architecture
Homes

Verandah Daze

To spot a pair of courting hornbills- merely metres away in the knarly frangipani tree in your bathroom courtyard - is an unusual and extraordinary privilege. bawa4 That such an enchantment should occur whilst staying at Claughton House, a holiday villa designed by acclaimed Sri Lankan architect Geoffrey Bawa is not so surprising however. Whilst homage to indoor- outdoor interplay is now a buzzword, few designers have melded buildings with their natural context quite as inextricably or as inventively. bawa5 Situated along Sri Lanka’s voluptuously lush south coast, upon an eight acre coconut grove overlooking a long surf beach, Claughton House does dazzling homage to the sense-stirring innovations of one of Asia’s most influential architects. True to Bawa form, you need to mind your step as you move towards the rather Moorish walled entrance, lest you trip on the protruding rock. bawa6 Restrained yet bold, Claughton House is quintessential, allusive Bawa in that it is way too worldly to implore “look at me”. Instead, impact and drama is delivered experientially, by way of a gradual revelation of unfolding spaces and sensual reactions. Emerging from the cooling, tunnel-like corridor, suddenly it seems as if the salt-spay might dampen your skin. Splayed out over three distinct levels, the breezy living areas encompass the sea in such a way that the curling surf seems at eye level- belying the lofty, privacy- bolstering headland positioning. bawa2 Simple materials such as concrete - used to create built- in couches, as flooring, as wide, low balustrades that double up as display and seating areas, and even as coffee tables – dark timbers, bamboo shutters and batiks create a soulful, tactile effect. Towering concrete posts – grain from formwork clearly visible, for Bawa eschewed overly smooth surfaces - from a distance may be mistaken for coconut palms. A wafting palette of greys and worked up ocean taupe creates an effect akin to sitting within a giant pearl shell. An occasional curve enriches strong vertical lines and in another Bawa bow to comfort, cozy seating nooks are scattered throughout the grounds and residence. bawa3 Even introverted spaces such as the bedrooms and bathrooms are rendered airy  and visually expansive thanks to courtyards and vista- luring openings. Here, light refracting terrazzo floors create the impression of walking on solid satin. bawa1 Ancient temples, colourful markets and a vibrant fishing community are within relaxing day-tripping distance. But then again, when you’re ensconced in your own exclusive paradise, with warm, helpful staff eager to cook you delectable food- whatever, whenever, using herbs and spices straight from the garden- there seems little point in venturing too far beyond your private walkway to the beach. Villas in Sri Lanka villasinsrilanka.com Other excellent additions to a tour of Geoffrey Bawa beachside abodes are the Jetwing Lighthouse and Villa Bentota.abc
Architecture
NOT HOMES
Places

Zhou Zhou Bar

Chapel Street has been in need of a good bar, a really good bar, for some time; surely a cozy cul del sac to wind up or wind down at the end of the day is not too much to ask. Welcome Zhou Zhou – the oriental drinking den with a difference. zhou3 David Zhou’s Oriental Tea House on Chapel Street has for long been a popular spot to meet for a few steamed dumplings. Now, you only have to get yourself up the stairs to Zhou Zhou, a modern, Chinese-style bar lounge open Wednesday to Sunday. "The original brief was to create a Chinese wine and tapas bar that would also lend itself to functions," says Lucy Bock from the interior design team at Hecker Guthrie. "The bar was to be an extension of the original Oriental Tea house (done by others on the ground level) and to evoke a sense of Old Shanghai in terms of decor and finishes." Accents of Chinese greenery mixed with distinctly Regional blue and white porcelain pieces and unique Chinese styling elements create a considered contemporary versus industrial feel. It is an interior that offers a very welcome alternative to Chapel Street's uniform pub halls. zhou1 But bars are also about drinking, and Zhou Zhou specialises in craft beer. In fact, Zhou Zhou has the most Asian beers under one roof, boasting a lager & craft beer list of over 50 brands. From Japanese craft beer, Asian ales, Austral Asian craft beers, Asian lagers and ciders, Zhou Zhou offers a comprehensive list of distinct nectars. "China is not nearly as well known for its wine as it is for its beer," continues Bock. "I guess you could say the theme is 'Chinese beer and tapas bar'". Unique styling gives the space its true character, creating a Chinese industrial vintage yet contemporary interior. Collating a series of vintage Chinese beer posters (with the focus on Chinese ‘beer’ girls) and then abstracting the images into pixelated contemporary artworks "was a simple and affordable way to create the 'wow' factor," adds Bock. "We also endeavoured to create an oriental beer experience," continues Bock. And encountering a flickering buzzing neon sign immediately as you enter certainly evokes a sense of China town. zhou4 "We also love the fun and quirkiness of the space," says Bock, a feeling that has been generated through loose furniture and styling accessories. "We struck gold when we found the little Chairman Mao figurines and thought ‘why not’ create a little nod to the ‘People’s Republic of … ‘Beer’??" And for the not so beer inclined, Zhou Zhou also offers a concise, considered & well priced wine list, as well as cocktails bursting with flavour, such as a Japanese bloody mary that ditches the Vodka for Sake and throws in some punchy wasabi and chilli. zhou The ever-ebullient David Zhou says of the latest addition to his hospitality interests; “Beer and dumpling are a couple, just like Australians and BBQ, or yum cha and tea, but great beers and great dumplings are a perfect couple, and they live in a very comfortable house that is Zhou Zhou.” Inspired by ‘The Bund’ Shanghai in the 1930s, Zhou Zhou is a bar that it is both refined and eclectic, with all the fun parts added in. Oriental Teahouse orientalteahouse.com.au Hecker Guthrie heckerguthrie.comabc
Happenings
What's On

Living In Iconic Australian Houses

Does 'growing up in architecture' influence your perspective on love, life and beauty? This panel features discussions from Neil Buhrich who grew up in numerous iconic homes, Karen McCartney, guest curator of the Iconic Australian Houses exhibition, who is raising her family in Bruce Rickard’s Marshall House, and Dr Bill Lyons, the commissioning client and current owner of Robin Boyd’s Lyons House, Sydney. Led by ABC RN’s By design host Fenella Kernebone, the panel will share their personal stories about living in iconic homes – the joys, challenges, expectations and responsibilities. Your ticket includes entry to the Iconic Australian Houses exhibition and refreshments before the talk. Home & Architecture Talk Series Date Start: 2014-06-29 14:30:00 Date End:2014-06-29 16:30:00 Location:Museum of Sydney, Cnr. of Phillip and Bridge Streets. abc
Happenings
What's On

Endless Stair becomes Scale Infinite

Endless Stair, an intriguing structure of Escher-like interlocking staircases made from American tulipwood cross-laminated timber (CLT), has fast become a feature at Interni Magazine’s ‘Feeding New Ideas for the City’ exhibition at the Università degli Studi in Milan. stairs4 Designed by de Rijke Marsh Morgan Architects (dRMM), engineered by Arup, and built by Imola Legno and Nüssli, Endless Stair was conceived as a three-dimensional exercise in modular timber construction, offering the potential for reconfiguration and adaptation to different contexts. The Ca’ Granda building, one of main venues in the FuoriSalone event, became the setting for Scale Infinite – the latest iteration in the life of Endless Stair. As their Landmark Project for 2013, Endless Stair was installed in front of the Tate Modern, during last September's London Design Festival. stairs2 Maintaining the initial influence of Escher, Scale Infinite is a further play on perspective. Six interlocking flights of steps have been joined together to create a visually arresting form, offering a compositional contrast to the classical uniformity of the surrounding Renaissance building. This game of perspective also gives users the chance to experience the elegant courtyard of the Ca’ Granda from a unique viewpoint. Scale Infinite is a deliberate contrast in material, scale and composition to its harmonious new backdrop in Milan; it is a provocative aesthetic and, as ever, adds a new dimension to the context in which it stands. stairs3 Scale Infinite is not just an exciting wood sculpture, it is also part of a unique research project that is advancing the knowledge of timber construction and sustainability. This project is the first ever use of hardwood for cross-laminated timber (CLT), which is usually made from softwood. American tulipwood (Liriodendron tulipifera), whose name is derived from its distinctive tulip-shaped flowers, is an abundant and relatively inexpensive American hardwood. Crucially for this project, it is incredibly strong and stiff for its weight. stairs5 “This project is helping to demonstrate that hardwoods, with their high performance and attractive appearance can add a new dimension to future timber construction," says AHEC's European Director, David Venables. "We are really excited about bringing the structure to this important event in Milan and believe it will be a major attraction and talking point.” stairs The latest reincarnation Scale Infinite pushes the design of the CLT elements even further by using performance data gathered from the London installation. Experimenting with the re-arrangement of landings and extending the cantilevering top flight to its limit, Scale Infinite has lifted engineering design to a new level. AHEC americanhardwood.orgabc
Design Products
Furniture

King Chair

Creating a beautiful armchair is a difficult enough prospect. But coming up with one that is comfortable as well as beautiful is rarely achieved. We think Charles Wilson has hit the jackpot with his new Seymour Chair for King Furniture. Wilson, a freelance industrial designer is no stranger to upholstered furniture design, although he is perhaps best known for the multi-award winning stainless steel candelabra he created for Menu (it picked up the Australian Design Award in 2007). kng1 In recent years Wilson has collaborated with King Furniture to produce the Andrea; a sleek modular sofa built around an engineered steel frame. He says he sees the Seymour as an extension of this project. “The chair has been vaguely on the table for a couple of years, but it was really up to me to step up with a concept,” he says. “It took me a heck of a long time to come up with something that I was happy with and that would also suit the brand and the brand technologies and capabilities. It’s not an easy thing to reconcile, but I think we nailed it in the end, I’m very happy with it.” Wilson says he set out to make a chair that would become a favourite place to perch. A place to relax in the evening with a glass of Scotch and a good book. He spent 18 months developing the chair, experimenting with mould-making and sophisticated techniques, not just for the fibreglass shell, but for the upholstery and cantilevered base. king2 “It took us a long time to get all that right, working alongside John Levey, King Furniture’s research and development manager.” There are two versions of the chair; a high-back and a low-back. Both have deep roots in mid-century modernism and draw on Wilson’s exemplary knowledge of design history. “I didn’t refer directly to anything directly, but I do see the Eames Lounge Chair for Herman Miller as the benchmark for a modernist lounge chair,” Wilson admits. “And while the Seymour is not a gendered object, like the Eames I wanted to err towards a real man’s chair.” Showroom versions include the Seymour in a brown leather upholstered finish, and a honeycomb pattered fabric weave. However his favourite to date is the high-back version finished in Indigo chenille. “It’s actually a lot more classy than it sounds,” he laughs. “Chenille can sometimes be a bit soft and bourgeois but on the Seymour and in that deep blue it really works.” The Seymour is available from King Furniture in the following states:  NSW, VIC, QLD, ACT, SA and WA. And online kingfurniture.com.auabc