Contrasting Locally Sourced Materiality – House at Otago Bay by Topology Studio
Project Feature
Otago Bay, TAS, Australia

Photography Paul Hermes
Words Bronwyn Marhsall
Internally, The Spaces Are A Combination Of Expressed External Materiality, Refined Elements And A Timber Ceiling That Runs The Continuous Curve F

House at Otago Bay by Victorian based architecture practice Topology Studio is anchored into the rock of a steeply sloping site over the Derwent River. The design for the home is a play on concealing and revealing through contrasting locally sourced materiality and dramatic formal responses.

The home embraces its unique geographical position, looking outward, while still being deeply grounded into the bedrock of the site.  The structure references the sense of enclosure and embrace evident in the landscape, with gestures speaking to the curved contours of the site, curating vistas beyond neighbouring properties and to the mountain beyond.

House At Otago Bay Perches Over The Derwent River On A Steeply Sloping Rock Bed Site, And Is The Result Of A Play On Contrasts.
The Transition Between Inside And Out Is Both Deliberate And Effortless.
House at Otago Bay embraces its unique geographical position, looking outward, while still being deeply grounded into the bedrock of the site.
On Tlp Today, We Explore The Play Of Contrasts In House At Otago Bay. Topology Studio Has Conjured A Sense Of Drama On The Waterfront, Emphasising

The home embraces its unique geographical position, looking outward, while still being deeply grounded into the bedrock of the site.

Situated On Steeply Sloping Rock, Perching Over The Derwent River, Topology Studio’s House At Otago Bay Is A Play On Concealing And Revealing Thro

The chosen materiality speaks to the solid mass and texture of the geography, as both a reference and a point of context. Locally sourced materials were selected for their endurance and suitability in such a hard climate. Externally warm rough masonry acts as an extension of the site and also as a form of protection from the elements. The thick exaggerated walls and deep colonnades play a role in thermal mass loading and solar protection, with the deep reveals and openings responding to the angles of the summer sun while the thermal mass allows for the winter sun to be absorbed through the slab. These same elements are also key to the home’s bold architectural formality, which, from the waterfront,  looks to be made from two volumes, sitting atop one another.

Uniquely Located Along The River Derwent, House At Otago Bay Embraces Its Geographical Position, Looking Outward, While Still Being Deeply Grounde
As With The Structure, The Sense Of Enclosure And Embrace Are Evident In The Landscape, With Gestures Speaking To The Curved Contours Of The Site
The interiors express the external materiality, combining the rough masonry with more refined elements and a timber ceiling that runs the continuous curve for the length of the home.
Situated On A Site Embedded With Rock, A Thin Layer Of Topsoil Is The Living Support For The Landscape Elements.

The chosen materiality speaks to the solid mass and texture of the geography, as both a reference and a point of context.

Externally, The Combination Of Warm Textural Masonry Acts As An Extension Of The Site, And Also Acts As A Form Of Protection From The Elements
House At Otago Bay Embraces Its Geographical Position, Looking Outward, While Still Being Deeply Grounded To Its Foundations.
Set Upon A Steeply Sloping Site, The Chosen Materiality Speaks To The Solidity Of The Geography, As Both A Reference And A Point Of Context
Curating Vistas Beyond Neighbouring Properties And To The Mountain Beyond.

The interiors express the external materiality, combining the rough masonry with more refined elements and a timber ceiling that runs the continuous curve for the length of the home. This ceiling acts a gesture to the movement into and outward from the home, lifting up upon entry, dipping to create a sense of enclosure within, and then focusing outward again toward the river and Mount Wellington views beyond. As a result, the transition between inside and out is deliberate yet effortless.

The Sense Of Enclosure And Embrace Are Evident In The Landscape Also, With Gestures Speaking To The Curved Contours Of The Site.
Topology Studio Together With Cave Construction Worked In Section Throughout The Design Process, Carefully Ensuring The Integration With The Exist
Topology Studio’s House At Otago Bay Is A Play On Concealing And Revealing Through Contrasting Locally Sourced Materiality And Dramatic Formal Res
Situated On Steeply Sloping Rock, Perching Over The Derwent River,
The thick exaggerated walls and the deep colonnades play a role in thermal mass loading and solar protection.
The Thick Exaggerated Walls, The Deep Colonnades And The Purposed Bold Formality Are Both Formally Important And Play A Role In Thermal Mass Loadi

Melbourne based Topology Studio worked in section throughout the design process, carefully ensuring the integration with the existing rock and that the introduced forms would not feel imposed. With entry at grade with steps down from the courtyard into the garden, the terrace is then designed to be additional steps lower than the colonnade to ensure the seating elements do not affect the view internally. Inspired by a small ruined farmhouse on the Amalfi Coast’s approach to steep inclines, the stair leading down to the riverfront is purposed to mimic that gesture. The integration of a ‘ha-ha’ wall to the terrace provides a sense of protection, again without impacting the view.

The Same Ceiling Acts A Gesture To The Movement Into And Outward From The Home, Lifting Up Upon Entry, Dipping To Create A Sense Of Enclosure With

The interiors express the external materiality, combining the rough masonry with more refined elements and a timber ceiling that runs the continuous curve for the length of the home.

The Thick Exaggerated Walls, The Deep Colonnades And The Purposed Bold Formality Are Both Formally Important, And Play A Role In Thermal Mass Load
House at Otago Bay is a refreshing reflection on texture, drama and contextual appropriateness.
From The Waterfront, The House Looks To Be Made From Two Volumes, Sitting Atop One Another, Both Guarding Opposite Approaches, Creating Deliberate
The deep reveals and openings respond to the summer sun angles and the thermal mass.
Short Feature House At Otago Bay, Topology Studio

House at Otago Bay is a refreshing reflection on texture, drama and contextual appropriateness.  Emphasising its position on such a steep site, the building responds with both strength and elegance to its unique location.

We Explore How Topology Studio Has Conjured A Sense Of Drama Through Concealment And Reveal, Maximising It Unique Geographical Waterfront Surround
Published 17 July, 2020
Photography  Paul Hermes
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