Crane in the Sky sees YSG Studio transform a bland, soulless penthouse apartment in Sydney’s Walsh Bay into a treasure-trove of texture, pattern and colour.
Stepping inside the apartment, one enters a world that is at once vibrant and soothing. The soft, muted palette of the white marmorino polished plaster walls and almond travertine flooring creates light, airy spaces into which intriguing and unexpected elements have been injected at every opportunity. Rather than letting the clients’ art collection do all the work of enlivening the home, YSG Studio’s design instead takes up the language that is begun by the artworks and uses it to weave new stories.
The original three-bedroom apartment was dated and nondescript, exuding a corporate lack of personality, and the closed plan cut off its most valuable asset – the views of the water. As empty-nesters, the clients’ priorities were not those of a family home. Rather, they sought a place where they could entertain, work, and embrace their love of art and colour. As such, the brief included changing one of the bedrooms into a study, creating a greater sense of openness and connection (both between spaces and to the views), and curating a selection of furniture under the strict instruction: no white or beige.
The tight, angular plan was transformed through the removal of key walls, creating more generous, connected and light-filled spaces. The kitchen, which was originally fully enclosed, has become an integral part of the open living and dining space. The zone is demarcated by a stacked emerald marble counter, over which a line of sight is offered to the view beyond. The master bedroom was also previously denied access to the view due to a dividing wall set immediately within the entry to the space. Now, with this obstructive partition removed, the eye is drawn to the harbour as one enters.
Colour is used joyously yet judiciously. From the glimpse of the unexpected bright pink VOLA tap that pops unexpectedly from behind the deep green marble in the kitchen to the candy-striped pendant lights above the dining table, colour is employed for impact and maximum effect. The palette of salmon, plum and tangerine takes its cues from the paintings in the dining and living area, while the deeper tones of indigo and olive green that provide a grounding sense of contrast in the space are taken up with broader brushstrokes in the master bedroom and study, where they imbue a sense of calm.
Blurring the line between art and interior design, the pièce de résistance is a hand-painted mural on the ceiling above the bed. Inspired by antique Chinese folding screens, the mural’s soothing display of lilies and pond ripples unfurl across the ceiling. The mural is one of many unique elements designed and custom-made home, from the custom-designed Tappeti rug and bespoke bedhead upholstered in hand-embroidered Pierre Frey fabric to the bar, with its richly detailed stone inlays and direct view of the water that makes pouring a drink a memorable moment.
YSG Studio has created a series of spaces whose intriguing composition draws one’s attention in even as the glory of the view outside is a pull outward. Diverse, rich and detailed, Crane in the Sky brings the penthouse apartment to its full potential.