emma_house5 This project was the first by Fota Design , Australia.  Projects like these are why us creatives do what we do.   To do truly good work there is a point we reach when we stop thinking and start feeling.  There will always be innumerable designs for any given project.  No limit to the subtle variances that are all within the realm of acceptable and practical for the scope.  There comes a point however, when the pencil seems to take itself through to the end.  I often look down at a layout once complete and think, wow, that's it.  I can articulate the many reasons why it's the one, but it is that final 10% that I simply could not begin to explain that makes it perfect. 

The Emma house by Lisa Foo, may not be your taste.  Some may question how anyone could live amongst the concrete and white walls, however seeing the completed project and family moving through the space undoubtedly shows us how very perfect it is for them. 

Her attention to detail was unwavering.  Subtleties such as the use of Merbau wood at the base of the double height doors to prevent damage with the inevitable moisture.  The living areas need not be air conditioned.  She has simply taken advantage of the concrete's thermal insulating properties on the east and west facades.  The pool's placement on the western side of the house allows the evaporating waters to cool the severity of afternoon sun. 

Throughout the space she's played the light and dark off each other.  Simplistic perfect balance of material and tone.  Japanese elements and principles show themselves throughout the project.  One space dissolves into another.  The landscape is "borrowed" by creating large openings from the interior to the exterior.   The article sites the fact the architect and client have met weekly for over a year and no decision is made without thoughtful consideration by them both.  Our Western sensibilities tend to prefer a more streamlined, hands-off approach.   I try to balance my desire to fulfill both.  Lisa has offered me a bit of food for thought...






[Source: Habitus Magazine, Issue 01]