David Teeland, the co-director of the award-winning Noosa-based architectural practice Teeland Architects, cites his childhood home and global travels as the fuel that fired his love for design. “I grew up in an unconventional architect-designed house,” he says. “It was a modern house with a flat roof, glass exterior walls, located high up on steel posts in a steep rainforest gulley on the edge of the Brisbane River. The whole house could be opened up to the outside with sliding glass doors and the interiors had a wonderful connection to the landscape. My parents were interested in art, so the walls and garden were packed with an eclectic mix of paintings and sculptures. I think that being surrounded by all this stuff as a kid helps you to develop a creative sensibility which you can draw on as an architect.”
The architect’s background was further enriched by work stints in the Alpine town of Telluride and his travels in Central and South America. “I have always been interested in the architecture of the Inca and Aztec Empires and to visit these incredible lost cities and see the spaces and craftsmanship opens your imagination to what is possible.”
The coastal landscape and subtropical forests of Noosa and the Sunshine Coast are significant sources of inspiration.
David cites these influences and an abiding love for nature as fundamentals that consistently resonate in the practice’s projects, which span residential, commercial and cultural genres. “I take a lot of inspiration from the natural world,” he continues. “In nature, there is always this sublime balance or repetition and variation that can inform your work. So when I am not working, I like to spend time at the beach or out in the ocean, it clears the mind but also design solutions seem to present themselves.” As expected the breathtaking coastal landscape and subtropical forests of Noosa and the Sunshine Coast are significant sources of inspiration, both in their abundant natural beauty and rich architectural history.
Asked about the current challenges in the region, David refers to the loss of green space and the natural character of the area. “The good news is that green spaces and soft landscaping can be incorporated into new developments and that soft landscape will increase the amenity and ultimately the value of these properties,” he offers.
“Green spaces and soft landscaping can be incorporated into new developments.”
This approach is evident in their acclaimed Tinbeerwah House, an extraordinarily elegant, timber slatted pavilion that boasts extraordinary interior spaces and a resort-style pool that embraces view over the Noosa hinterland to the ocean. The architect is also committed to producing sustainable buildings that are ultimately “good” for the environment. “I think there is a general movement to more sustainable design,” he says. “A lot of our new houses collect all their own power and water, then recycle the wastewater on site. I believe that in the future most buildings will become energy generating entities, selling power back to the grid, rather than energy consuming buying power. This is obviously already happening, but in the future, I think it will be the mainstream.”
Photography by Keith Hamlyn
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