A journalist recently asked me about my favourite projects. I love all the projects we do so I found it a hard question to answer. It is much easier to identify what I love about my work.
I love the way architecture helps bring about a connection with people. I enjoy being able to see their dreams realised. It’s inspiring to take someone’s brief and transform it into something that they just love, particularly in residential projects.
Architects have a responsibility to create positive environments for people to live and work in. That’s a really important part of what we do.
A few projects have changed my practice, so they are special to me. The first was Witchcliffe House. I started and finished this project while going through a messy divorce with four children under seven. I was also setting up my current practice. My clients on this project have been the most amazing advocates for me and the practice. I feel their house is a timeless piece of architecture and I’m very proud of it. I’m excited to be working with these same clients again, this time on the development of their winery facilities.
The second project I have great affection for is Bedfordale House. This project was a gift from heaven. I had amazing clients, a brief you dream of and a budget that was realistic. That project went on to win a number of awards and attract international press attention. It has raised our profile and I still get emails from people all over the world asking about that house. I took Dad there when the project was completed and that is also a very special memory.
The third project that is very dear to me is Guildford House. This was an addition to a dilapidated heritage home in the heritage precinct of Guildford. I had absolutely gorgeous clients to work with. We kept unveiling layers of the history of the house on the site, including white clay brick details layered with coats of red paint. The bricks were the last made in Guildford Brickworks from local white clay in the 1890’s. There is something profoundly satisfying about building on this history and giving that wonderful old place a new life.
On reflection, my favourite projects are homes I designed for people who I got to know and enjoy. I can’t separate the buildings from the people. I think that’s because my starting point in all architecture is people. I’m committed to understanding what will comfort, delight and inspire them. I want them to love and feel deeply connected to their new homes. Come to think about it, that’s my definition of success.
Credit: Thanks to Community News