Residential Design: Alterations & Additions: $200K–$500K Construction Cost
This highly personalised house was rebuilt after being almost razed to the ground during the tragic Black Saturday bushfires. Survival of significant elements of the house along with a limited insurance payout drove rebuilding rather than wholesale demolition, slotting this entry into this category. The design has used surviving elements to pay homage to the original house and the owner’s attachment to it, enabling it to re-emerge in exquisite form. As such, the house is testament to the courage of the survivors of a terrible bushfire season.
The house is a lyrical but robust interpretation of contemporary design, which is not only completely at ease in its setting, but actually contributes to its natural beauty. While completely unpolished in its use of materials, such as the surviving structural steel elements, burned concrete and rusted Corten steel internal and external linings, the house has an elegant arrangement of bold forms which appear to float above butt jointed glass walls, providing a compelling contrast of textures.
The plan has open living areas, where the fire damaged concrete slab and kitchen island bench are evidence of the intensity of the bushfire. However, rather than providing a gloomy reminder of tragedy, the re-use of these elements lends a sense of triumph to the design. Similarly, fire-blackened steel is retained to frame large areas of glazing which look out on to the surrounding bushland and well integrated landscaping features. Interior treatments follow the external aesthetic, with extensive use of roughhewn timber along with rusted steel as wall and ceiling linings.
The designer’s skill is clearly evident in this building, and the result is both unique and beautiful.
Best Energy Efficient Design – Residential
A tremendous challenge presented itself here when the original dwelling suffered extensive damage in the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires. The embodied energy of the old home was reclaimed, and the thermal mass of the concrete slab and brick walls – together with clever use of cross ventilation and sunlight capturing – have all added to ensure this house not only sits within its environment, but in essence, becomes it.
Callignee II has total services independence. The rainwater is harvested, solar power is captured, and waste from the home goes into a biolytic blackwater system. Even the water tank pump is solar-powered. An in-slab hydronic heating system is fed by the solid fuel heater which helps heat the dwelling, whilst a combination of high performance glazing and louvers both assist in heat loss and gain where and when necessary.
This truly amazing ‘creation’ proves that you ‘can’ have your cake, and eat it too!
Best Environmentally Sustainable Design – Residential (Commendation)
Once again it was hard to go past ‘Callignee II–Regeneration’ and it is easy to see why the judges viewed Callignee as worthy of a commendation. In addition to its use of thermal mass concrete and brick, cross-flow ventilation via open window and louvre systems, high performance glazing, water harvesting; being totally self-sufficient, and high use of solar systems, this unique home has been constructed using a high proportion of recycled materials.
Interior Design – Residential
Rebuilding of a home destroyed by the Black Saturday fires, Callignee II is most deserving of the Best Residential Interior Design as it reclaims its foundations and embodies a regenerated form of original materials with a new energy of recycled and sustainable materials within an energy efficient design.
The boundaries between the exterior and interior are blurred, as the architectural form opens up with bi-fold walls and suspension bridges to physically and visually invite the outside in. This is enhanced by the effective use of the bush landscape and materials comprising of wood, stone and rusted steel being repeatedly referenced both inside and outside.
The interior design is commendable for its deliberate expression of the post-fire finishes blended with the newly regenerated interiors. It is a confident demonstration of materials, used both in their raw and natural states for cabinetry and furniture, which gives it a soul.
Honest expressive detailing with an almost handmade feel suggest a simple relaxed lifestyle connected to its landscape. Hamilton Design have created a cosy and warm, yet light and airy open home that breathes with new life.
Most Innovative Kitchen Design
The deliberate intention of the designer to leave the scars of the fire damage and work to reinstate the kitchen with a simple aesthetic and practical design layout is admirable.
The simple form is the foundation of a practical and workable kitchen set behind the generous island bench. There is no trace of conventional kitchen finishes such as tiles and two pack but, rather, an organic palette of burnished, cracked and heat scorched concrete floor, bench surfaces and steel bench perimeter materials that are expressed in the detail of the cabinetry design. The materials and colours mesh well with the architecture.
The modern slick appliances are all hidden behind cupboard doors to keep the technology understated. An expansive bi-fold glass window acts as ventilation for cooking and as a servery to the outdoor courtyard connecting with the outdoors.
The boundaries of the kitchen are blurred as it has been strategically placed in the centre of the home to connect with the meals, living and dining, which are all in close proximity. Hand-made and textured furniture pieces add to the relaxed feel of the kitchen, and complement the neighbouring rooms.
Earthy textures make this kitchen interior and design timeless and respectful of its past embers.
Most Innovative Bathroom Design
Callignee II – the rebuilding of a home destroyed by the Black Saturday fires – includes the recreation of the bathroom with its northerly aspect.
An innovative and workable design solution for the shower is achieved by suspending planks of recycled ironbark over the sunken Japanese bath. It is cocooned by glass walls and a glass roof with bamboo screening so the shower feels like it is outside.
The finishes are commendable, for there is no evidence of paint, tiles or non-sustainable materials being used. Rather, natural stone fittings and warm recycled eucalypt hardwood wharf timber stacked and bolted. Though the materials are bulky, they feel cosy, and exemplify organic luxury. This bathroom nurtures the soul with its honest detailing of cabinetry and raw textural materials.
The relaxed forms and recycled materials with views to the bush landscape make this bathroom unique. The colours are warm, well co-ordinated, and visually balanced with other material selections throughout the home.
Most Innovative Use of Steel
In a hotly debated category, this ‘one out of left field’ entrant yet again impressed the judges tremendously. In this building, steel is not only used as a structural and purposeful component, but is interwoven throughout to become part of the aesthetic fabric of the home. All this can be seen in the expansive use of exposed steel framing and rusted Corten steel cladding to the exterior of the building, which almost dominates the other materials. The interior of the dwelling also retains the exposed steel framing connection, and steel grid-mesh provides part of the floor structure to the upstairs bedroom loft. Truly unique! Exposed metal-plate connections, rusty old steel bollards and plating additionally help form the furniture and fittings, like the dining table and seating. The focal point of the kitchen – the concrete island bench – is housed in a steel perimeter beam which retains evidence of the fire that razed the original dwelling. Inside and out, steel has helped create a remarkable building. This left no doubt in the judges’ minds that ‘Callignee II’ well deserved this award.
Most Innovative Use of Timber
This entry wins this category for the unique ways in which timber has been used throughout. Heavy timber planks form the access bridge to the upper level of the house, and are used in seemingly random lengths for a suspended floor. Similar planking forms a shower platform which, in turn, covers a sunken Japanese-style bath. Massive recycled wharf timbers are stacked and bolted to form bathroom vanities, and roughhewn timber forms a backdrop to the bed in the main bedroom. A floating stair with thick timber treads connects upper and lower levels, and raw timber elements abound in the landscaped garden areas. The timber used is generally recycled, or sustainably sourced. The designer has exercised great skill in the use of robust materials to achieve a surprisingly sophisticated result.