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Issue 59 - The Life Outside Issue

Issue 59

The Life Outside Issue

Introducing the Life Outside issue of Habitus magazine. With life increasingly being absorbed into a digital space, there is never a more important moment to hold something tangible. In this context, the power of nature to have a physiological impact on our sense of wellbeing has never been more important. So how can we cultivate the benefits of the our natural environment in the most intimate of places – our homes? This was the question that helped to bring this issue of Habitus to life.

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Serene, evocative and cosmopolitan: Solid Air by ANNA.CARIN
ApartmentsSaskia Neacsu

Serene, evocative and cosmopolitan: Solid Air by ANNA.CARIN

Australia

ANNA.CARIN orchestrates a cosmopolitan design in which the echoes of Josef Frank’s timeless pieces harmonise with recycled treasures and bespoke furnishings, creating a narrative that speaks to sustainability, longevity and refined taste.


Solid Air is the personal residence of interior designer Anna-Carin McNamara and her partner Lance, a commercial film director. The design duo sought a home for the third act of life by fostering a slow-paced environment whose convivial atmosphere accommodates small, intimate dinner parties for friends and family breakfasts.

The design process for a project at ANNA.CARIN starts with three words and one song. In the case of Solid Air, the studio harkened to the words of John Martyn – something that has sentimental value to the couple, as it is one of the first songs Lance played for Anna when they first met. The three words that drove each design decision were: serene, evocative and cosmopolitan. The home marries solidity and function with lightness and breath.

Located in the active streets of Elizabeth Bay and perched in a building nestled up among the trees, the north-east-facing apartment was remodelled with an Art Deco aesthetic, neutral palette and emphasis on light. ANNA.CARIN emphasised restoring and revealing the existing features and layout, as opposed to adding and hiding the original elements – “the rooms were crying out to be seen.” Once hidden behind heavy curtains, carpets and misplaced joinery, the spatial composition was reconfigured to maximise natural light filtration and open spaces.

An awkward corner where a nib wall had to be left was curved and the edge clad with handmade mirrors to create an illusion and hide the awkwardness. The large bay windows were stripped of blinds and drapes and left bare, allowing light to permeate through and invite occasions for gazing into the trees and the birds outside.

Related: Dutch Quarter by Sally Caroline

Removing all window treatments, the window seating was seamlessly integrated into the rooms with tone-on-tone seats and cushions. The neutral material palette grew from a handful of natural objects collected on a special memorable trip to the coast. The introduction of light oak flooring from Made by Storey then set the tone for the rest of the finishes which are all light and fresh.

At Solid Air, there was an importance placed on recycling and reuse of materials, furniture and features. An existing and intimate curation of pieces by Josef Frank – ones that have been with the designer for 30 years – set the tone for sourcing pieces with flexibility and longevity in mind. 

The vintage Cassina chairs and (Facebook Marketplace-found) dining table gave history and personality to the space, without imposing or competing with the J39 dining chairs. The USM Haller module used in the living room and bedroom offers flexibility and practicality. Upholding the importance of recycling, the bar stools by Mater are designed from discarded beer bottle crates. Finally, anchoring the living room is a Kasthall rug, which is adorned with a custom coffee table manufactured from the left-over kitchen quartzite slabs that take centre stage.

Zen Apartment was an entry in The Interior Space category of the 2023 INDE.Awards – entries for the 2024 INDE.Awards are now open.

ANNA.CARIN
annacarindesign.com

Photography
Justin Alexander


About the Author

Saskia Neacsu

Tags

ANNA.CARINAustraliafurnitureHome ArchitectureInterior DesigninteriorsResidential ArchitectureSolid AirSydney


Products That Made This Possible

Furniture

Sjogrens Sweden

506070shop

Hartley Antiques

Sweden

Cult

IKEA

Anibou

Lighting

Nemo

Lyfa

Fred International

Inlite

Great Dane

FLOS/Euroluce

Finishes

Artedomus

Joineryhub

Galleria Pietra

Polytec Laminate

New Age Veneers

Outlines Richmond

FLOS

Fybre Furnishings

UNIQUE fabrics

Simple studio

Fittings & Fixtures

Vola

V-Zug

Liebherre

Neff

Pitt

Samsung

Vauni Sweden

Related Projects
Issue 59 - The Life Outside Issue

Issue 59

The Life Outside Issue

Introducing the Life Outside issue of Habitus magazine. With life increasingly being absorbed into a digital space, there is never a more important moment to hold something tangible. In this context, the power of nature to have a physiological impact on our sense of wellbeing has never been more important. So how can we cultivate the benefits of the our natural environment in the most intimate of places – our homes? This was the question that helped to bring this issue of Habitus to life.

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