Australian House of the Year Awards 2012
The Art Gallery of New South Wales held this years Houses Awards on the 26th July. These awards proudly promote Australian architecture and reward design excellence. With a total of eight catagories, the big winner of the night was the Shearer’s Quarters by John Wardle Architects taking out two awards, New House under 200 square metres and the top prize of Australian House of the Year.
Sitting on a historic farming property on Bruny Island, Tasmania the house was praised by the jury for its ” inquisitive exploration of detail, form and context” and its “effortless relationship to the built, cultivated and natural landscape”. The Shearer’s Quarters in all its simplistic beauty reflects a unique combination of both the working lifestyle of the farm and a space that provides solace and retreat. (Images: Trevor Mein via ArchitectureAU)
The interior portrays a warmth through the materials and details of each room with the jury commenting “the material expression has a farm-sense quality, and draws heavily on recycled timber and convict-era handmade bricks. This is a finely tuned and beautifully synthesized building that is a reminder of the essential systems and patterns of domestic life.” (Images: Trevor Mein via ArchitectureAU)
Winner of the New House over 200m2 Award went to Big Hill by Kerstin Thompson Architects, Victoria ( Image: Trevor Mein via ArchitectureAU) The jury commented on how the “house is a direct design response to site, form and utility of material, which combine to create a solid, robust shelter against the Southern Ocean’s exposure. Although the approach is from the ocean prospect, arrival and entry is from the north, immediately establishing “house as windbreak.” Disclosure of the view is subverted by the compressed triangular plan, yet the experience is heightened at the place where the prospect is most revered. In the words of the architect, “the right angle triangle is most productively aligned with the forces of the site. The long side of the triangle acts as a retaining wall struck against the slope of the land.”
Winner of the Alteration and Addition over 200m2 was the Annandale House by CO-AP (Image: Ross Honeysett via ArchitectureAU). This renovated terrace got the judges tick of approval as it shows “a delightfully unexpected response to the Victorian terrace renovation brief that is typical in the inner-city suburbs of Sydney and Melbourne.”